Wednesday, April 18, 2012
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A man who became known as the nation's "oldest teenager" during a television career of more than 60 years has died.
Dick Clark was 82. A spokesman says he had a heart attack this morning at a hospital in Santa Monica, Calif., where he had gone yesterday for an outpatient procedure.
He joined the "American Bandstand" show in 1956, when it was still on local TV in Philadelphia. It soon became a national phenomenon, and helped bring rock `n' roll into the mainstream.
He would later describe the series this way: "I played records, the kids danced and America watched."
Clark would later found Dick Clark Productions, supplying movies, game and music shows, beauty contests and more to television.
His credits included "The $25,000 Pyramid," "TV's Bloopers and Practical Jokes" and the American Music Awards.
When he suffered a stroke in December of 2004, he had to miss his annual New Year's Eve appearance in New York. He returned the following year -- and even though he spoke with difficulty, he continued to take part in those shows.
(Copyright 2012, The Associated Press)