Singing legend and Emmy-winning TV host legend Andy Williams died yesterday in Branson, Montana, of cancer at age 84. Here’s what you should know.
1. He Sang “Moon River”
First sung by Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, “Moon River” became Williams’ theme song. He performed it at the 1962 Academy Awards and used it to kick off every episode of his TV show.
2. He Was Host of The Andy Williams Show(1962-1971)
3. He Hosted the Grammys (1971-1977)
4. He Was Close Friends with the Kennedys
Andy Williams was close friends with Ethel and Robert Kennedy and, also campaigned for Kennedy’s 1986 Presidency. Williams was near during RFK’s Death in June 1968, and also sang “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” at RFK’s funeral by the request of RFK’s widow, Ethel. A year after RFK’s death, Andy Williams and his wife, Claudine, named their first son “Bobby Williams” in memory of RFK. The Williams’ friendship with the Kennedys endured longevity, with Williams serving as an escort, during events in the 1970’s. Although Andy Williams was close friends with the Democratic Kennedys, he remained a lifelong Republican.
5. He Had 18 Gold Albums & 3 Platinum Albums
6. He Was a Ladies Man
Andy was quite the catch; charming and America’s clean-cut style, warmth with a voice compared to chocolate sauce & a way with words. Andy was “The Man” with his numerous tally of girlfriends he could do no wrong. He was just that attractive. However, he was a family man. Andy’s gracious knack and love was always putting his family first. After his divorce from his first wife, Claudine, he’s stood by her side. While in 1975, Claudine Longet was charged with the fatal shooting of her boyfriend, Vladimir Sabich and Andy remained by her. In 1991 he married Debbie Williams and has been faithful till his death. He is survived by his ex-Wife, three kids & widow. Though he loves the ladies, Andy does care.
7. Ronald Reagan Called Him a “National Treasure”
8. His Other Megahits Included “Butterfly” and “Can’t Get Used to Losing You”
9. He Wrote an Autobiography in 2009, Moon River and Me: A Memoir
10. William’s Show Introduced the World to The Osmond Brothers and Later to Donny Osmond