Thursday, June 29, 2023

Bob Crane's Unsolved Murder — 45 Years Ago Today

In the early morning hours of June 29, 1978, we lost Bob Crane. As the Hogan's Heroes star slept in his Scottsdale, Arizona, apartment, he was brutally bludgeoned to death. It was a gruesome crime scene, and Bob's murder remains unsolved to this day, baffling detectives and law enforcement now for 45 years.

Bob had been appearing in his play, Beginner's Luck, in Scottsdale, and the run of the show was nearing its end. Bob was looking forward to returning home to Los Angeles on July 4, focusing on new television projects, reconnecting with his family, and working on bettering his life with the help of a professional therapist. But it was not to be. Bob left this world abruptly by the cruel hands of another just two weeks shy of his 50th birthday. Ever since, his murder and the scandal that followed have overshadowed nearly everything else Bob did in his life. So much of what he did was good, and yet, we don't hear much about it. As I was once told by a television executive, "Nobody wants to read the good stuff. They only want the dirt. Who cares about radio? Who cares about his charity work? Who cares about drums? That stuff will never sell."

We beg to differ.

It's all too easy to focus on the negative. Sure, it boosts ratings and brings in the money. And there is a lot of money to be made on murder and scandal. 

But when you are only served the "low-hanging fruit," you don't get to hear the whole story. You don't get to know the person, what made them tick, why they behaved in certain ways, and how they handled their successes, as well as their struggles. When you are only served up the crime and the dirt, it can have devastating effects in the court of public opinion. 

This couldn't be more true in the case of Bob Crane. Many will snicker and sneer when they see or hear the name Bob Crane, and there will be an avalanche of ignorant, hurtful, and hateful comments on social media. True crime enthusiasts will watch any number of investigative TV shows and/or podcasts, playing armchair detective and theorizing who dunnit. Even with their limited knowledge on the subject, they don't just think—they think they know—everything there is to know because a TV show or a movie or Wikipedia told them so, and you cannot convince them otherwise.

The truth is, and as we have been saying for nearly two decades, there is so much more to Bob Crane's life story than his starring role on Hogan's Heroes, his unsolved murder, and a stale tabloid headline. We are proud to be Bob Crane's official biographers, endorsed and supported by The Estate of Bob Crane. We are honored to have been entrusted with cherished memories from hundreds of people directly connected to Bob spanning his entire lifetime. These are not just little anecdotes collected from a few people making for an interesting compendium. They are full, detailed, reflective testimonies, woven together with painstaking research of archival materials into a rich tapestry that allowed us to form a deep understanding of Bob from nearly every facet, time period, and corner of his life. And since he is no longer here to do so himself, we will continue to share Bob Crane's complete and true life story every chance we get, humbly standing up for him and on behalf of so many beautiful souls who knew him well and loved him dearly—most of whom trusted only us to do so.

We might night never know who committed the crime or why Bob Crane was murdered. But we do know this—he continues to be remembered and loved by many: members of his family, his dear friends, his coworkers, and his fans. 

Rest in peace, Bob Crane. You are not forgotten.