5 things you didn’t know about Gallagher

24 Jun

For over four decades Leo Gallagher has entertained us with his stand-up comedy routines that include giant props, oddities of the English language and the Sledge-O-Matic. He quickly rose to fame in the early 1970’s as a headlining act on the comedy club circuit. Then, in 1979 when there was a revival of the game show “Make Me Laugh”, where contestant would try to keep from laughing at comedians for three minutes, it was natural that Gallagher would be one of the comedians. The game show only lasted two seasons and then Gallagher went into doing one-hour cable specials.

Outside of all the fame there are several things we don’t know about Gallagher. The following are just five of those little known facts:

Has a chemical engineering degree

In the early 1950’s when Gallagher was 9-years-old his parents moved the family to Tampa, Florida. While growing up there Gallagher attended the University of South Florida where he graduated in 1969 with a degree in Chemical engineering with a minor in English Literature.

Road manager for Jim Stafford

After graduation Gallagher meet Comedian/Musician Jim Stafford and became his road manager. It was at this time he began working on his own act. When their travels took them to California he decided it was time to branch out on his own.

Johnny Carson didn’t like him

In the 1970’s & 1980’s many comedians would get their big break on the tonight show with Johnny Carson. It was not so for Leo Gallagher since Mr. Carson didn’t like prop comedy and wouldn’t book Gallagher on the show. The front office liked him though so they would book him for days that Mr. Carson was off on vacation and their would be a guest host.

Sued his younger brother

In the late 1990’s Gallagher’s younger brother Ron proposed that since the two of them looked so much alike he could go on the road and preform the act in cities he, older bother Leo Gallagher, didn’t go to. Gallagher agreed as long as Ron used the billing “Gallagher too”. It went fine at the start but Ron soon dropped the “too” off of the billing. Leo Gallagher asked him several times to either put the “too” back or stop preforming his act. Ron refused to comply force Leo to take strong measure and flied a lawsuit in 2000 for trademark infringement. Leo won the suit forcing the younger Gallagher to stop using his older brother’s act.

Slowed by Heart attacks

In 2011 Gallagher suffered a mild Heart attack. The next year he had a second attack that prompted him to go in for medical attention. The doctors put the comedian in a drug induced coma as they explored to find the cause of his heart trouble. When they final brought him out of the coma they operated to give him two cardiac stents.

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