June 6, 2001:

It was not until the spring or summer of 1972, that I had ever heard of Walter Tetley. That was so long ago that he was still alive, back then.........but by that time, he was in his last years.........his last few difficult years (and way past his prime). In the spring and summer of 1972, Walter Tetley was down to his very last three to three-and-a-half years.

For W.T. enthusiasts, you have to wonder what he was doing with himself, at that time. Surely we know that he was probably still in a great deal of pain, from his motorcycle accident (circa 1971.........or perhaps as long ago as the late 60s). But I am sure that he continued to live, and function, on other levels. Surely there were times, when he was not just involved in rehab, or medical treatment.

We do know that he continued to work, for part of those last few years, when he could. I also have to wonder if he was still involved with his volunteer work, with the handicapped (I had read that he started doing this work before he, himself, was in a wheelchair).

I would like to find a picture of him, as he looked then, in the early to mid 70s. Most of the pictures, that I have seen of him, are from 30 years earlier. Though many of those later photos, were probably not particularly flattering (due to that difficult phase of his life, and the fact that he was fast approaching the identity of a senior citizen), I would really enjoy seeing a different side of him.

The more faces, that we manage to see of an individual, the more it helps us in truly knowing him better. I have read enough about Walter's life that, seeing a snapshot of him in his fifties, would truly compliment my knowledge of him.

One of our readers, sent us a copy of Tetley's death certificate. The information, on this certificate, shows that he and fellow voice actor, June Foray, were neighbors, at some point (they both lived in Woodland Hills, CA). His very last address, however, according to this certificate, was a convalescent home (or nursing home).

On the other hand, the late, great, veteran voice artist, Paul Frees, said, in 1975, that he thought that Walter was living in a trailer, down by the beach by that time. All of these mysteries, and questions, surrounding Walter's last years.......and days; they are quite intriguing.

I sometimes wonder about Harold Peary, his co-star, and the title player of The Great Gildersleeve. I wonder if he visited Walter, when he was in the hospital, or at his home, when he got out. I wonder if he called on Walter, from time to time, at his home, in an effort to comfort and cheer him up, after all the years, that they worked together, on that radio show.

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