Another Talent Taken Too Soon

This is getting really scary.

I’m not one to follow the celebrity culture and I have no fascination with celebrity deaths. That being said, I cannot turn away from all these famous people passing before their time.

Farrah Fawcett, while was battling cancer, still died well before her time. You know all about Michael Jackson. Now, another celebrity has passed … and quite unexpectedly. He is famous, but  only to a certain group of people. Those whose follow infomercials and a desire to buy those items that claim to do the outrageous. Everything from remove scratches with a pen to remove any stain with a lump of something that looks like lard. I’m speaking of Billy Mays.

While I do not know Billy Mays personally, there is a connection. There is his Pittsburgh connection. He’s a McKees Rocks native that worked his way up from the ground level to become America’s foremost pitchman. He became a true original who learned the sell is in the pitch as much as it is in the product.

The connection I have is through my segment called “Test It Tuesday”. Our weekly segment is pretty much having viewers like you putting the products that Mays pitches to the test …. to see if they do what they claim in those commercials. While the results were mixed, Mays’ pitches and products were a great source of material for me.

billy mays

McKees Rocks native Billy Mays: Pitchman extraordinaire who passed well before his time.

I did once try to get an interview with Mr.Mays … with no luck. He was too busy moving at the time. I also felt I would get another chance to talk to him at his Florida home. This is why you never make plans for the future because the future is never guaranteed.

The early word is that the 50-year-old pitchman passed in  much the same way actress Natasha Richardson died: a delayed reaction to a serious shaking of the head and brain. For Richardson, it came from a ski accident. For Mays, a hard landing at the airport.

It’s a shame when anyone passes before there time, but its even harder when its someone with obvious talent …. whether it be an actor, a singer, a physician or a pitchman. In this case, the pitchman who made his first sale in McKees Rocks.

So much for these things happening in threes.

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