Kids’ show star Sandy Becker got start in Elmhurst 1

The teenage home of Sandy Becker at 41-06 Case St. in Elmhurst as it looks today.

George Sanford “Sandy” Becker was born on Feb. 19, 1922, the only child of George and Selma Becker. They all lived with Selma’s parents at 609 West 149 St. in Manhattan.

In 1939, when Sandy was 17 years old, they moved to a brand-new apartment building at 41-06 Case St. in Elmhurst. His father, an NYPD patrolman, could now walk to work at the 110th Precinct.

Sandy, blessed with a smooth melodious voice, was hired as an announcer for radio station WWRL in Woodside. He was hired by a CBS affiliate, WBTV, as an announcer in Charlotte, NC in 1942 and fell in love with a girl there named Ruth Venable. They married in August that year while both were aged 20.

They came to New York and Sandy was hired for the radio soap opera “Young Doctor Malone.” He could have transferred the role to TV, but decided to pursue other projects with WNEW Channel 5 with a variety of children shows. The advent of “The Sandy Becker Show” in 1961, in which he operated puppets and played roles as various goofy characters, bought him the biggest fame.

Sandy was a household staple every evening in New York. After 49 years of marriage, Ruth passed away in May 1991. Still young at heart and full of life, Sandy married Cherie Ann in September 1991. He died of a heart attack at his home in Remsenburg, LI, on April 9, 1996 at age 74.

Sadly most of Sandy’s TV work was never recorded and saved, but lives on in the memories of baby boomers.

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