Bob Denver: Wikis


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Bob Denver
Born Robert Osbourne Denver
January 9, 1935(1935-01-09)
New Rochelle, New York,
United States
Died September 2, 2005 (aged 70)
Winston-Salem, North Carolina,
United States
Spouse(s) Maggie Ryan (1960-1966) 2 children
Jean Webber (1967-1970)
Carole Abrahams (1972-1975) 1 child
Dreama Peery (1979-2005) 1 child

Robert Osbourne "Bob" Denver (January 9, 1935 – September 2, 2005) was an American comedic actor best known for his role as Gilligan on the television series Gilligan's Island. Prior to Gilligan's Island, he played beatnik Maynard G. Krebs on the 1959-1963 TV series The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis.


Early life

Denver was born in New Rochelle, New York, and raised in Brownwood in central Texas. He graduated from Loyola University (predecessor to today's Loyola Marymount University) in Los Angeles, California. After attending the Sylvia Herpolscheiemer Academy for Performance Arts, he first found work as a mailman. He would later coach physical education and teach mathematics at Corpus Christi School, a Roman Catholic elementary school in Pacific Palisades.

Television and film career

Bob Denver's first film appearance was in the service farce, "A Private's Affair" with Sal Mineo. Amazingly, Bob didn't have the goatee, but Sal Mineo did.

He co-starred with Dwayne Hickman on The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis in 1959. Hickman, also a Loyola graduate, played the title role and Denver played Maynard G. Krebs. Also in the series was Tuesday Weld, who played Thalia Menninger, Sheila Kuehl, who played Zelda Gilroy, and Steven Franken, who played the dilettante playboy Chatsworth Osborne, Jr. While he was on Dobie Gillis, Denver also appeared on the NBC interview program Here's Hollywood. He also had a small role as an unrequited lover on the Andy Griffith Show.

He landed a small role in the 1963 James Stewart film, Take Her, She's Mine, playing a beatnik poet working at a coffee shop named "The Sleeping Pill," and was credited as "Robert Denver." Denver also appeared in the 1964 beach movie For Those Who Think Young with Tina Louise prior to the development of Gilligan's Island. He also appeared in the 1967 comedy film Who's Minding the Mint.

He was remembered primarily as a comic actor, yet Denver also appeared in one dramatic role on television, as a physician (Dr. Paul Garrett) in one episode of Dr. Kildare, telecast on October 10, 1963. The episode, "If You Can't Handle the Truth," also featured Barbara Eden and Ken Berry.

When Dobie Gillis ended in 1963, Denver landed the title role on Gilligan's Island, which ran for three seasons on CBS.

Later career

Bob Denver, 1977.jpg

After the conclusion of, Gilligan's Island, Denver performed in other shows such as, The Good Guys (1968–1970), Love American Style and Dusty's Trail (1973) (a facsimile of Gilligan's Island, with the basis of a lost wagon train). He also starred in a children's program, Far Out Space Nuts (1975), which was essentially Gilligan in space. He also played Morris Binstock, "Eagleman/Children of Mentu," on Fantasy Island, on ABC, in 1980. These shows were appreciated by Bob Denver fans, but none of them matched the wider audience success of his earlier roles.

In 1998, Denver was arrested for having a parcel of marijuana delivered to his home. He originally said that the parcel had come from Dawn Wells (who had played "Mary Ann" on Gilligan's Island) but later refused to name her in court and testified that, "some crazy fan must have sent it." The police reportedly found more of the plant and related paraphernalia in Denver's home. He pleaded no contest and received six months probation.[1] Wells herself would be sentenced to six months' unsupervised probation after she was arrested in 2007 for having marijuana in her car.

Later on in his life, Denver returned to his adopted home of Princeton, West Virginia, and became an FM radio personality. He and his wife, Dreama, ran a small "oldies format" radio station, WGAG-LP. He also earned a small income making public appearances, often costumed as Gilligan. In 1987, he recreated the character of Gilligan as a bartender in Back to the Beach in which he complained about having been stranded on an island with a guy who could make a nuclear reactor out of coconuts but could not fix a hole in a boat.


In May 2005, Denver underwent quadruple heart bypass surgery and was subsequently diagnosed with throat cancer. He died September 2, from pneumonia and squamous cell carcinoma of the larynx[2] at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. With him at the time of his death were his wife of 26 years, the former Dreama Peery, and his 4 children—Patrick, Megan, Emily, and Colin—from three of his four marriages. Denver was cremated and his ashes were given to his family.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Gilligan's Dreams Dana Stevens at, September 6, 2005
  2. ^ North Carolina Death Certificate (September 7, 2005) via Find A Grave.

External links

Simple English

Bob Denver (January 9, 1935September 2, 2005) was an American actor. He was best known for his roles as Gilligan on the 1960s television series Gilligan's Island and Maynard G. Krebs on the earlier Many Loves of Dobie Gillis. He appeared on many other shows including The Good Guys, Dusty's Trail, and Far-Out Space Nuts, but these could not match his success as Gilligan. In 1998, he was arrested for marijuana possession and in 2005, he underwent heart surgery. After that he learned he had cancer. Before he became an actor, Denver worked as a mailman and a high school teacher.

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