Dean Martin Roast –
Foster Brooks was born on May 11, 1912. He was an American actor and comedian most famous for his portrayal of a lovable drunken man in nightclub performances and television programs.
Foster Brooks was born in Louisville, Kentucky on May 11, 1912. He was one of eight sons. His career started in radio, most notably with Marshall Krieger at station WHAS (AM) in Louisville. Brooks was a staff announcer, but his deep baritone voice was well-suited for singing as well. Brooks gained some measure of fame for his reporting of the Ohio River flood of 1937, where he was featured on emergency broadcasts by WHAS and also WSM (AM) out of Nashville, Tennessee. In 1952, Brooks appeared on local television in a short-lived spoof of Gene Autry and his “Singing Cowboys”. He later worked in local broadcasting as a radio and TV personality in Buffalo and Rochester, New York before moving to the West Coast to launch a career as a standup comic and character actor.
In character as a loveable drunk and as cast member of the Dean Martin show, Brooks jokingly asked Dean to join his group “Alcoholics Unanimous”, a play on Alcoholics Anonymous.
Public sensibilities had changed regarding alcoholics and public drunkenness by the 1980s, so Brooks moved away from his drunk character. He had a recurring role as Mr. Sternhagen, Mindy’s boss on Mork & Mindy. For many years, his name was a moniker on a Louisville celebrity golf tournament benefiting Kosair Charities. Foster Brooks was a Shriner and member of the Al Malaikah Shriners, Los Angeles. He also made occasional guest appearances on television shows in which he would demonstrate his lesser-known talent: a beautiful singing voice.
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