David Nelson

  • Born: October 24, 1936
  • Died: January 10, 2011
  • Location: Century City, California

Tribute


The Nelson Family, Ozzie and Harriet with sons Ricky, left, and David, pose in their television home in this undated photo.

Surviving member of famous TV family dies at 74

The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES (AP) — David Nelson, who starred on his parents' popular television show "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet," has died, a family spokesman said. He was 74.

Nelson, who was battling complications of colon cancer, died Tuesday at his Los Angeles home, said family spokesman and longtime Hollywood publicist Dale Olson.

Nelson was the last remaining member of the Nelsons TV family, which included actor/bandleader Ozzie, his singer wife, Harriet Hilliard and his teen idol brother Rick. The show originated on radio in 1952 as "Here Come the Nelsons," then ran for 320 episodes on TV from 1952 to 1966 as "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet" with some of the story lines taken from the stars' own lives. David Nelson also directed and produced numerous episodes of the show throughout its run.

Singer Gunnar Nelson, a son of Rick Nelson, issued a statement Wednesday, saying his uncle's death was "a great loss to the Nelson family."

"We will all miss Uncle Dave's laughter and evolved sense of humor," Gunnar Nelson said.

Exterior scenes for "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet" were shot outside the Nelson family home in the Hollywood foothills, and it remains a popular attraction for visitors on celebrity bus tours. The home's interior was mirrored on a studio sound stage where the series was shot.

Born in New York City, David attended Hollywood High School and the University of Southern California.

His film credits included "Peyton Place," ''The Remarkable Mr. Pennypacker," ''The Big Circus," ''Day of the Outlaw," ''30,''''The Big Show," ''Love and Kisses" and "Swing Out, Sweet Land." In 1976, he costarred with his mother in "Smash-Up on Interstate 5."

His television credits included "Up In Smoke," ''The Love Boat," ''High School USA," and "A Family For Joe." Directing credits included "O.K. Crackerby," ''Childish Things," ''Easy To Be Free," ''Ozzie's Girls," ''Death Screams," ''Last Plane Out," ''Goodnight Beantown" and "A Rare Breed."

Nelson also was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

He is survived by his wife, Yvonne; four sons and a daughter; and seven grandchildren. A service will be held Thursday at Pierce Brothers Westwood Mortuary.


Condolence & Memory Journal

Candle

The Nelson's were the perfect family. So sad to see that become a memory.

Posted by Barb Mylott - fan   January 11, 2012

David was the last of a great family.I loved Ricky forever.I saw his 3 sons this summer in ocean city and they were great.Hope TV start playing old reruns. Susan

Posted by Susan Scanlon    January 14, 2011

Loved watching the Nelsons growing up. All were wonderful, especially Ricky. Named my daughter, Kris, after his beautiful wife. That's how much I was impressed. Always think of him on New Year's eve.

Posted by Marilyn Williams    January 13, 2011

I REMEMBER ALL OF THE NELSONS AND THEY WERE GREAT PEOPLE. MY PRAYERS GO TO ALL WHO KNEW AND LOVED HIM. SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS.I REALLY BROKE DOWN WHEN HIS BROTHER RICK NELSON DIED.THE WHOLE FAMILY IS THE BEST.

Posted by BONNIEPARK - WEST CARROLLTON, OH - FAN   January 13, 2011

Candle

I was not around when Ozzie & Harriet was on, but that show was very wholesome and taught good values. We need that today. Great show. Rest in peace David Nelson, you seemed like a nice guy. My condolences to the family.

Posted by C Nelson    January 12, 2011

that was a great show.

Posted by patty toth - myrtle beach, SC - admire   January 12, 2011

Candle

I remember watching the Nelsons growing up in South Georgia. I enjoyed the family bond and the antics of the two boys. Also the talent to reach so many people in TV land.

Posted by Winnie McLeod - Fan   January 12, 2011


Default Album

Actor and director David Nelson poses with his grandson Michael Woolery and family friend Ashley Holt as he is honored with the 2,065th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles, Thurday, May 9, 1996.
The Nelson Family, Ozzie and Harriet with sons Ricky, left, and David, pose in their television home in this undated photo.