Frank Avruch, aka Boston’s Bozo the Clown
Frank Avruch, a Jewish entertainer known for his portrayal of Bozo the Clown on television, has died. Avruch, a longtime Boston television personality, died March 20 at his home there from heart disease, his family said in a statement to WCVB-TV. He was 89.
He played Bozo from 1959 to 1970, when local TV stations franchised a character originally created by another Jewish American, record producer Alan W. Livingston. Avruch became the first nationally syndicated Bozo the Clown.
“He had a heart of gold,” manager Stuart Hersh told e Associated Press on March 21. “He brought the Bozo the Clown character to life better than anyone else’s portrayal of Bozo the Clown.”
Avruch was an active philanthropist and a board member of UNICEF’s New England chapter. He toured the world performing as Bozo for UNICEF, the United Nations organization dedicated to helping children in need.
In an interview for “TV Party,” Avruch, who was born in Boston to Russian-Jewish parents, revealed that he did not use his real last name when he started out in television.
“You had to go on television, you had to change your name. Frank Stevens was my name. And when I came out of the Army, I decided to use my real name,” he said.
The decision to use his real name was after seeing “a very famous announcer from the network television called Andre Baruch,” he recalled in the interview. “And I said, well, if he can do it, I can do it, too.”
—JTA News and Features
Sylvia Cherrick, of Rockville, died March 19. Cherrick was the beloved wife of the late Samuel Cherrick; devoted mother of Helene (Norman) Stark, Abe (Debbie Sunshine) Cherrick, Jordan (Lorraine) Cherrick and the late Sol Cherrick (Phyllis); loving
grandmother of 10 and great-grandmother of 33. Contributions can be made to Beth Sholom Congregation in Potomac or Camp HASC. Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Beatrice Friedman, of Potomac, died March 15. Friedman was the beloved wife of the late Saul B. Friedman; devoted and loving mother of Alan Friedman, Sheila (late William) Myers and the late Sandra (Craig) Baruch; adored grandmother of Kevin (Therese) Friedman, Stephen (Cynthia) Myers, Scott (Jerinae) Friedman, Heather Stone, William (Amy) Baruch, Robert Baruch and Daniel Baruch; great-grandmother of Tyler, Anabelle, Sydnee, Bryan, Kassidy Chloe, Olivia, Jack, Joey and
Linnea. Contributions can be made to the American Cancer Society. Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield
Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Alice Grochal, of Chevy Chase, died March 25. She was 98. Grochal was the beloved wife of the late Bernard Grochal; devoted mother of Diane (Jim) Gordon and Alan (Barbara) Grochal; loving grandmother of five and great-grandmother of three.
Contributions can be made to the charity of choice. Arrangements by Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.
Carol A. Sege
Carol A. Sege, of Palo Alto, Calif., died March 21. She was 90. Born in the Bronx, N.Y., in 1927, Sege studied chemical engineering at Columbia University, where she met her husband, George. She later moved to the Washington area to work for
the Department of Energy, where her work included international cooperative nuclear energy projects.
The Seges raised their family in Potomac, and were longtime members of Congregation Beth El of Montgomery County in Bethesda. She is survived by her children, Irene, Vivian Saper, Robert, Jill and Alan, along with 12 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. Contributions can be made to Congregation Kol Emeth in Palo Alto, Calif., or Hadassah.