Richard Crane (actor)

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Richard Crane
Richard Crane in Behind Green Lights.jpg
Crane in Behind Green Lights (1946)
Richard Ollie Crane

(1918-06-06)June 6, 1918
DiedMarch 9, 1969(1969-03-09) (aged 50)
Resting placeValhalla Memorial Park Cemetery
Years active1940–1968

Richard Ollie Crane (June 6, 1918 – March 9, 1969) was a character actor whose career spanned three decades in films and television. His early career included many uncredited performances in feature films made in the 1940s.

Early years and career[edit]

Crane was born in New Castle, Indiana.[1] Crane may be best remembered for his portrayal of the title role in the TV science fiction series Rocky Jones, Space Ranger,[2]: 905  which ran for two seasons starting in 1954. In 1952, he signed a seven-year contract that specified he was to make annual tours of the United States, appearing as Jones in presentations to school groups.[3]

In 1949–1950, he portrayed Lieutenant Cummings in Mysteries of Chinatown a crime drama on ABC television.[2]: 738  Crane also appeared in the outer-space adventure serial Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe in 1953, as Dick Preston,[2] Cody's semi-comical sidekick, and was the hero of the 1951 serial based loosely on Jules Verne's Mysterious Island.

Crane portrayed Gene Plehan in the crime drama Surfside 6 on ABC (1960-1962).[2]: 1041  He later made numerous appearances in many popular TV shows. In 1958-1959 he made two guest appearances on Perry Mason: as George Moore in "The Case of the Lonely Heiress," and Dr. Douglas Keene in "The Case of the Caretaker's Cat." Other television appearances included The Lone Ranger, Death Valley Days, Dragnet, Lassie, The Rifleman, and Gang Busters, in which he played gangster John Dillinger's associate Homer Van Meter. (Footage from Gang Busters, including Crane's part as Homer Van Meter, was edited into the low-budget theatrical film Guns Don't Argue.)

Crane acted on stage with the Las Palmas Theater, performing in Command Decision in 1949 and Light Up the Sky in 1950.[4]


Crane died of a heart attack at the age of 50. He is buried in Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery.[1]

Partial filmography[edit]


  1. ^ a b Ellenberger, Allan R. (2001). Celebrities in Los Angeles Cemeteries: A Directory. McFarland. p. 203. ISBN 9780786409839. Retrieved June 13, 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d Terrace, Vincent (2011). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2010 (2nd ed.). Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. pp. 203–204. ISBN 978-0-7864-6477-7.
  3. ^ Bacon, James (January 13, 1952). "Richard Crane Gives Up Movie For TV Contract". Asheville Citizen-Times. North Carolina, Asheville. Associated Press. p. B 11. Retrieved June 12, 2018 – via open access
  4. ^ "Stage Lead Taken by Richard Crane". The Los Angeles Times. California, Los Angeles. May 23, 1950. p. 30.

Sources and External Links[edit]