Feb. 20, 1936 Wapato Yakima County Washington, USA
Sep. 9, 2003 Austin Travis County Texas, USA
Actor and Singer. He is best remembered for his role as 'Sergeant Andrew Carter' on the television sitcom "Hogan's Heroes" from 1965 to 1971. As a young child, he moved with his family to Houston, Texas. He started out as a vocalist, singing with his sister Joan Hovis, then joined a quartet called "The Mascots", and in 1948 they appeared on Arthur Godfrey's "Talent Scouts." After graduating from high school, he attended the University of Houston in Houston, Texas and graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Philosophy. During the mid-1950s, he appeared in nightclubs as a singer. He wrote songs and signed with Capitol Records and released one album entitled "My Heart Belongs Only to You." He also made appearances in local theater productions and after some success, he moved to New York City, New York in 1959 and appeared in Broadway productions like "The Billy Barnes Revue" (1959) and "From A to Z" (1960). In 1963 he moved to California where he performed stand-up comedy and tried to break into television. In 1964, he was discovered by Andy Griffith's manager and was hired to appear on the hit television series "Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C." where he played 'Private Larry Gotschalk' on ten episodes and also appeared on "The Andy Griffith Show" as 'Gilley Walker'. In 1965 he landed a minor role on the television sitcom pilot episode of "Hogan's Heroes" and when two other actors backed out of the series, he was given the permanent role as 'Sergeant Andrew Carter'. His character was part of a group of five Western Allied POWs, with each character having a specialized task or talent, and his was the ordnance expert. In addition to being a regular on Hogan's Heroes, he also did other work in the entertainment industry, including writing the screenplay for the 1966 spy-spoof "Out of Sight" and he also appeared in and wrote comedy bits for "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In." In 1971, when "Hogan's Heroes" was cancelled, he appeared in several TV shows like "The Doris Day Show," "Adam-12," "Chico and the Man," "Holmes and Yo-Yo," "Alice," as well as producing and appearing in the mid-1970s game show "Liar's Club." In the early 1980s he toured in the musical "Best Little Whorehouse in Texas" as 'Melvin P. Thorpe'. In 1982 he was a writer/producer on the "So You Think You Got Troubles" game show, which was hosted by actor/ventriloquist Jay Johnson. In the late 1980s, he teamed up with Gary Bernstein to form Bernstein-Hovis Productions, which produced the game shows "Anything For Money," the original version of "Lingo" and the short-lived "Yahtzee," a TV version of the classic dice game, for which he also announced and served as a regular panelist. In 1990 he taught drama at Southwest Texas State University in San Marcos, Texas (now Texas State University-San Marcos) until his death. He also appeared in the films "Wild In The Sky" (1972), "The New Daughters Of Joshua Cabe" (1976), "Sex And The Married Woman" (1977), "Shadow Force" (1993), "Lone Star State of Mind" (2002), and "Yorick" (2002). He died of esophageal cancer at the age of 67. (bio by: William Bjornstad)
Cause of death: Cancer
Burial: Cremated, Ashes scattered.
Maintained by: Find A Grave Record added: Sep 09, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 7854351