Today marks yet another passing of the anniversary of Bob Crane's untimely death. And once more, we remember Bob on this day humbly and with kindness, the way he deserves to be remembered.
Sadly, not all people are so kind. All people know about Bob Crane is from the film Auto Focus, and it is all they have been allowed to know. Some say that he got what he had coming to him. That he deserved it. That he was even the cause of it.
I cannot and will not agree with such callous and unthoughtful remarks. A lot of people suffer from an addiction, and they seek professional help, just as Bob had been doing. A lot of them come clean. Bob was unfortunate in that he was never given the chance to see it through. Someone else chose to end his life. Bob did not ask to be murdered.
People don't choose to become addicted. Addiction is an illness. Those who suffer from addiction didn't wake up one morning and say, "Gee, today's the day I'm going to become an addict. Yeah, let's go!" No. It happens quietly, slowly, painfully over time. Like the frog in the pot of water on the stove that is gradually coming to a boil. The frog doesn't know he's being cooked, no more than those who suffer from addiction don't know they are addicted until they are.
We are so quick as a society to judge others today that we forget that every person is fighting some kind of battle. Nobody is perfect. And in Bob's case, he not only did not deserve to die the way he did, but he also does not deserve the ongoing ridicule and humiliation brought on by the media and the film Auto Focus. He was a human being, and that simple fact is so often forgotten.
It is very important to understand that Bob had recognized and acknowledged his troubles, himself calling it an addiction. He was very serious about his commitment to change and sought professional guidance to do so. He just was never given the opportunity to see it through.
We have spoken with approximately 200 people who knew Bob Crane personally, many better than most, for the purposes of Bob's new biography I am writing, FLIPSIDE: THE TRUE STORY OF BOB CRANE - The Definitive Biography. Their recollections and testimonies of Bob are vastly different than how he was portrayed in the film Auto Focus. These individuals denounce and shame Auto Focus, saying it is nothing at all as how they remember Bob. This film was produced to shock and awe with scandal and salacious hype rather than to shed light on Bob as an individual. Much of what is seen in the film is either sensationalized or simply not true. Bob may have had his troubles, but this film completely demonizes him. I say again - he was neither a devil nor a saint. He was a human being.
As you know, I have been working on Bob Crane's biography for quite some time now. I am thrilled to tell you that I will be signing with a national publisher very shortly. This has been a long time coming, and it was a decision that I did not ever want to take lightly. Most publishers are demanding of their authors, and in the trade market, they will insist on a large percentage of such a book containing some sort of scandal before they will even consider it. This will not be the case with my publisher.
I like my publisher for a great many reasons, but at the top of the list is that he will not alter the content. He sees the book's merits and understands its importance. He will work with me as an invested partner in this endeavor to publish this biography the way it should be and to do justice to Bob. I could not be happier!
The target release date for the book is July 13, 2015 (Bob's birthday), and 2015 also coincides with the 50th Anniversary of Hogan's Heroes. This book would not be happening without the fine contributions and assistance of Dee Young and Linda Groundwater. To Bob's family, friends, and colleagues, yes, it is finally happening. And thanks to everyone for all your ongoing support.
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