Television host Ray Rayner, who entertained Chicago's children for decades, is dead.|
WGN-Ch. 9, where Rayner played several roles, announced his death on its Noon News.
Rayner was first known to television audiences as "Sgt. Henry Pettibone," host of the "Dick Tracy" show on WBBM-Ch. 2 beginning in 1961, WGN reported. Also that year, he joined WGN's "Bozo's Circus" as "Oliver O. Oliver," WGN recounted.
Rayner also presented WGN's "Breakfast with Bugs Bunny," later renamed "Ray Rayner & His Friends," the station said.
Rayner left "Bozo's Circus" in 1971 but continued with "Ray Rayner and His Friends" until 1981, when he left Chicago to become a weather forecaster for the CBS affiliate in Albuquerque, N.M., WGN said.
He returned for guest appearances on "The Bozo Show" in 1984, as Oliver O. Oliver on "The Bozo 25th Anniversary Special" in 1986, and as himself on "WGN-TV: Chicago's Very Own at 40" in 1988. He co-hosted "The Bozo Show 30th Anniversary Special" as himself in 1991, according to WGN.
In 2000, Rayner was inducted into the Chicago Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences' Silver Circle, WGN said.
Published online on Jan. 21, 2004 courtesy of Legacy.com.