Thursday, November 24, 2016

'Our Gang' and Radio Soap Actor Jerry Tucker Dead at 91

Jerry Tucker in 1940 while starring in CBS soap opera Hilltop House.
Jerry Schatz, a former child actor who appeared in several Our Gang comedies, often as a spoiled rich kid, died Wednesday morning of natural causes at the Long Island State Veterans Home in Stony Brook at age 91, his daughter Renee Schatz Wolf confirmed.

“He was a child actor, a disabled World War II veteran, a Mason, a Shriner, an Odd Fellow, but most of all he was our dad,” Wolf said.

Schatz, who was born in Chicago and acted under the screen name Jerry Tucker, always downplayed his screen accomplishments.

“Growing up, I thought everybody worked in the movies,” Schatz told Newsday in 2013. “I had no idea there was an outside world.”

Schatz also appeared in some of the biggest movies of the 1930s including Babes in Toyland (1934) with Laurel and Hardy, San Francisco (1936), Captain January (1936) with Temple and Boys Town (1938).

His credits include a stint on CBS radio soap opera Hilltop House (1939-1940). He played Roy Barry.

Schatz and his wife, Myra, who died in 2012, settled in Copiague, New York in 1950, where he worked as an electrical engineer with RCA Global Communications. He was also actively with several military-related groups, including the Veterans of Foreign Wars. In June 2015, a portion of St. Ann’s Avenue in Copiague was renamed Jerry Schatz Place in honor of his military career and service to the community.

In addition to Wolf, Schatz is survived by his daughter, Karen Duffy; five grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

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