Clayton Moore as:
THE LONE RANGER
LONE RANGER AND SILVER
CLAYTON MOORE as - The Lone Ranger
In today's world of multi-million dollalr sports, rock and television stars and super-stars the term and concept of
"ROLE MODEL" is often used and abused repeatedly. In the 1950 's CLAYTON MOORE defined and set the standards of personal and professional conduct necessary for anyone wishing to claim that title. A true gentleman, he became the epitimy of the term ROLE MODEL.
Clayton Moore was born Jack Carlton Moore, on September 14th 1914, in Chicago. By the age of 8 he had become an acrobat in the youngest aerial act at that time. He worked his way up to aerialist and appeared in two circuses and later at the 1934 World's Fair.
His next stop was in New York where he found work as a male model, before heading to Hollywood in 1938. His acrobatic skills made it possible for him to find work as a stuntman and bit player. At the suggestion of producer 'Eddie Small' Jack changed his first name to 'Clayton'. He appeared in minor roles in several B-Westerns and serials up to WWII.
After the war Clayton returned to Hollywood and B-Western scripts. His first role as a masked man was as 'Zorro' in "THE GHOST OF ZORRO".
George Trendle, the man who owned The Lone Ranger copyright, liked how Clayton performed in this role and asked him if he would like to play the masked lawman in an up coming television series. Clayton promptly answered, "Mr. Trendle, I AM the Lone Ranger. George made his final decision then and there.
The Lone Ranger had been heard on radio for fifteen years and Repulic Pictures had brought two films to the screen in the late 1930's. But it was in 1949 when Clayton Moore and Jay Silverheels brought the series to that new fangled technology called television that the chacter became immortalized. Clayton was "The Masked Man" from 1949 to 1952 when he was fired in a salary dispute.
He was replaced by actor John Hart, but Hart's tenure was terminated after one season and Clayton was hired back at a higher salary. Mr. Moore would continue to be the "masked man" until the series ended in 1957 afrer 169 half hour TV episodes and two big screen movies.
Clayton would later say in an interview for time magizine, "I came to Hollywood to play either a policeman or a cowboy. This role gave me the opportunity to play both at the same time."
After the series ended Clayton would continue to make personal appearances as The Lone Ranger, as well as TV commercials for Jeno's Pizza Rolls, Dodge, Aqua Velva and Amoco. At his personal appearances, which continued for three decades, Clayton would preach the Ranger's code of good behavior to his cowboy kid fans, which he also practiced himself. Most important he became a real life role model. That's the lagacy that Clayton Moore leaves behind for all of us.
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