Bobby Breen, a former child star who was known best in the 1930s, died Sept. 19, according to an obituary in the Miami Sun Sentinel. He was 88.
His wife, Audre, died the same week as her husband. Both died of natural causes, according to the obituary.
Bobby Breen was born Nov. 4, 1927, in Toronto, Canada. His family moved to California around the time when motion pictures had emerged from the silent era. He began singing in nightclubs as a small boy. In 1936, he starred in the first of seven RKO Radio Pictures movies, “Let’s Sing Again.” He went on to appear in the 1930s movies “Rainbow on the River,” “Make a Wish,” and “Escape to Paradise."
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After he appeared in “Escape to Paradise,” his voice started to change because of puberty, and he retired from show business.
Breen talked about his sudden voice change in a 1977 article, “When you've been a child star and suddenly find yourself with a husky voice, it's hard to convince agents that you're not over the hill. I stopped singing at 16 because of the huskiness and took up the piano. I had the knack for it but never wanted to be a concert pianist. I just wanted to be back in the world I'd known all my life.”
Because of his popularity, Breen was brought back to the silver screen for the movie “Johnny Doughboy.” He also signed a contract with Decca records and had moderate success as a singer.
He later became the owner of a talent agency in Florida.