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Bob 'Bazooka' Burns
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Comedian
    (August 2, 1890-February 2, 1956)
    Born in Greenwood, Arkansas
    Birth name was Robin Burns
    Invented the 'Bazooka' instrument (1905)
    Selected filmography includes 'Rhythm of the Range,' 'Mountain Music,' 'Radio City Revels,' 'Wahiki Wedding,' and 'Belle of the Yukon'
    Hosted the radio programs The Arkansas Traveler (1941–43) and The Bob Burns Show (1943–47)
    He was married three times.
    His birth year is sometimes incorrectly cited as either 1893 or 1896.
    He came up with the idea for the bazooka after blowing into a gas pipe which made a noise which he described as 'sounding like a wounded moose.'
    Some published filmographies wrongly credit him with roles in several Gene Autry films which should be credited to Bob Burns, a character actor in westerns.
    He was unpopular in his hometown of Van Buren, Arkansas for making it the regular subject of his comedic monologues, along with his backwards family members (almost all of whom were fictitious).
    He remained persona non grata in Van Buren long after his career ended, and the community eventually voted on renaming a movie theater that had been dedicated to him in the early thirties (changing it back to the King Opera House).
    He served with the Marine Corps during World War I.
    He became leader of the Marine Corps Jazz band, while in Europe, frequently playing a variation of his bazooka creation.
    He became successful performing on programs hosted by Bing Crosby and Rudy Vallee.
    He volunteered to retire from film in the early forties, when it became clear he would remain typecast as hillbilly yokels.
    He was allowed to break from the stereotype only once, when he portrayed a crusading lawyer in the 1939 drama 'Our Leading Citizen.'
    He wisely invested his income in San Fernando Valley real estate, and by the time of his death was one of the wealthiest people in Hollywood.
    During World War II, the US Army's handheld anti-tank rocket launcher was nicknamed 'the bazooka.'

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair


 
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