Published On: Thu, Feb 12th, 2015

‘Battlestar Galactica,’ ‘Bonanza’ star Lorne Greene born on this day in history

Lorne Greene, the actor who played Ben Cartwright on the immensely popular television Western Bonanza and Commander Adama on the 1970’s Sci-Fi show Battlestar Galactica, was born on this day, sharing a birthday with NBA legend Bill Russell and US President Abraham Lincoln.

The Canadian born actor, was born in Ontario during 1915. Greene’s success came very late in his career, while TV producer David Dortot spotted Greene playing a small role in the Western Wagon Train.

Lorne Greene as Ben "Pa" Cartwright on "Bonanza"

Lorne Greene as Ben “Pa” Cartwright on “Bonanza”

Dortot thought Greene would be perfect for the role of “Pa”-Ben Cartwright. Greene agreed to take the role, later confessing that he based the role on his own father.

Bonanza debuted on NBC in 1959 and remained on the air until 1973, making it one of the longest running TV Westerns ever. Somewhat unique among the many other TV Westerns of the time that emphasized solitary cowboys and gunmen, Bonanza focused on the strong familial bonds between Ben Cartwright and his three sons.

After Bonanza was canceled in 1973, Greene acted in several other  TV shows, including Battlestar Galactica, a cult favorite for science fiction fans.

For nearly a decade, Greene co-hosted the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on NBC. He is also fondly remembered as the founder of Toronto’s Academy of Radio Arts (originally called the Lorne Greene School of Broadcasting

He died in 1987 at the age of 72, still best remembered by millions as “Pa” Cartwright.

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- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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