Cal Worthington, a successful car salesman from Oklahoma who became famous after releasing his funny dealership advertisements, died watching football on Sunday at the age of 92, according to the LA Times.
Here are five fast facts you need to know about Cal Worthington.
1. Worthington Was Known For His Wacky Commercials
Worthington and his car dealerships became widely known after he began releasing his funny TV advertisements, which featured him wrestling with a tiger, flying upside down on an airplane wing, and riding a killer whale. But it was his “dog spot” that got him the real laughs. Check out the videos throughout this post for some hilarity.
2. Worthington’s Empire Expanded To 29 Dealerships Nation-Wide
At his height, Worthington owned more than 29 dealerships in multiple states. Some of these markets include Anchorage, Alaska; Phoenix, Arizona; Carlsbad, Claremont, Folsom, Long Beach, Sacramento and South Gate in California; Reno, Nevada; Houston and Sugar Land in Texas; and Federal Way, Washington. By his count, Cal claimed to have sold over a million cars, according to the NY Times.
3. Worthington Has 7 Children
Worthington is survived by his 7 children; Rod, Cal Jr., Coldren, Barbara Worthington, Susan Skellenger, and Courtney Worthington Shepherd. He also had and nine grandchildren and four failed marriages, according to the NY Times.
4. Worthington Owned Multiple Other Businesses
Although Cal Worthington was mostly known for owning a fleet of car dealerships, he also diversified into many other ventures. Firstly, he started Spot Advertising, an agency named after the running gag from his commercials, according to BizJournals. Worthington also owns a ranch that acts as one of the biggest almond and olive producers in California. Additionally, Worthington also owned shopping malls, multiple other ranches, and an office building, according to the NY Times.
5. Worthington Was A World War Two Veteran
On top of being a highly successful business man, Worthing was also a decorated World War Two veteran. He received the Distinguished Flying Cross for his actions overseas, according to adn.com. He also received five air medals as lead pilot over some of the first U.S. attacks on Berlin.