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Jack Benny and Mary Livingstone, tomb or grave, Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery, Culver City, California, photo

Jack Benny and Mary Livingstone, tomb or grave, Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery, Culver City, California, photo

The tomb or grave site of Jack Benny and Mary Livingstone (Benny). Jack Benny was born as Benjamin Kubelsky on February 14, 1894 in Chicago, Illinois. Most of his early years were in Waukegan, Illinois. Despite his ongoing comedy routine of playing the violin badly, he was skilled with the instrument and played in the school orchestra and various bands. His parents hope was that he would become a professional violinist. His professional career began in his teens by playing the violin in vaudeville. For the next twenty years he performed as a minor figure on the vaudeville circuit. His first major break came at the age of 38 when in 1932 he appeared on the highly popular Ed Sullivan radio show. Later the same year, he began his own radio show, The Jack Benny Program, which was nationally broadcast from 1932 to 1955. Some of his earlier radio programs were later re-broadcast from 1956 to 1958. During this time, Benny became widely known and highly successful with endless variations of the same themes revolving around his horrible violin playing, his age as always 39, his cheap, stingy nature, his barely running Maxwell auto, and his long running feud with fellow comedian Fred Allen. In reality, he was skilled with the violin, he was widely known to be generous, and was good friends with Fred Allen.

Jack Benny's real life wife, Mary Livingstone (born as Sadie Marcowitz, June 25, 1905, Seattle, Washington) was a frequent character during the early years of the Jack Benny Program. Despite her popularity, she later left the show after suffering from intense stage fright.

Another important character of the Jack Benny Program was Rochester, performed by Eddie Anderson. Rochester, who played the role of chauffeur and butler, played the role of an equal to Benny, despite the racial attitudes of the time. Anderson thus became the first African-American to be featured as a regular performer on a national radio broadcast. Over time, Anderson became highly popular and was one of the most well known performers of the time. In real life, Benny and Anderson were close friends.

During much of this same period of time as the radio broadcasts, The Jack Benny Program television show was broadcast from 1950 to 1965. Afterward, several Jack Benny TV specials were aired with the final broadcast occurring in 1974. Jack Benny died of pancreatic cancer later the same year on December 26, 1974 in Los Angeles, California. Benny was 80 years old. Benny's remains are enclosed in a tomb in an alcove within the mausoleum in Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery, Culver City, California. The inscription on the Benny tomb reads:

Jack Benny
Beloved Husband, Father and Grandfather
1894 - 1974
Mary Benny
Beloved Wife, Mother and Grandmother
1905 - 1983

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