Frank McHugh


Frank McHugh: Born May 23, 1899 Died Sep. 11, 1981 in Greenwich. Film, television and stage actor, part of the 1930s Hollywood’s Irish Mafia. He often played the leading man's good-natured or wisecracking sidekick to such stars as Bing Crosby and James Cagney. He appeared in the films "The Fighting 69th" and "Going My Way." McHugh came from a theatrical family. His parents ran a stock theatre company and as a young child he performed on stage. His brother Matt and sister Kitty performed an act with him by the time he was ten years old, but the family quit the stage around 1930. Another brother, Ed, became a stage manager and agent in New York

McHugh debuted on Broadway in The Fall Guy in 1925. Warner Bros. hired him as a contract player in 1930. McHugh played everything from lead actor to sidekick and would often provide comedy relief. He appeared in over 150 films and television productions and worked with almost every star at Warner Bros. By the 1950s, his film career had begun to decline, as evinced by his smaller role in Career (1959). From 1964 to 1965, he played the role of Willie Walters, a live-in handyman on ABC's sitcom, The Bing Crosby Show. His last television appearance was as Charlie Wingate in the episode "The Fix-It Man" on CBS's Lancer western series. McHugh played a handyman in that role too. He is buried in West Hartford.