Carradine inducted into Western performers hall

Sunday, April 13th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY - The sons of John Carradine serenaded the audience and reminisced about their late father as he was inducted into the Hall of Great Western Performers.

Actors David, Keith and Robert Carradine strummed guitars and sang "Amazing Grace" at the celebrity-laced 42nd annual Western Heritage Awards at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum on Saturday.

Their performance followed the presentation of a Bronze Wrangler sculpture to Larry D. Thomas for his poetry book "Amazing Grace."

John Carradine acted on stage, film and television for more than
60 years. He performed Shakespeare and horror movies, but films such as "Stagecoach" and "Jesse James" secured his induction into the Western performers hall.

"We all wish he was here to see this, because it would bring tears to his eyes," David Carradine said.

Actor Harry Carey Jr., who has appeared in more than 100 films and television shows, also was inducted into the hall.

"I'm just a lucky guy who learned to ride on my parents' ranch and had a great dad and a great mentor," Carey, 81, said of his father, Harry Carey, with whom he performed in "Red River."

The Western Heritage Awards began in 1961 as a way to encourage the preservation of the history and legends of the American West through the creative arts.

Russell Don "Red" Steagall, a cowboy storyteller, songwriter, singer and actor, was among three men inducted into the Hall ofGreat Westerners for people who helped shape the lifestyle and development of the West.

Steagall also received a Bronze Wrangler sculpture for his traditional Western album, "Wagon Tracks."

Actor William Devane was master of ceremonies and presenters included actors Ernest Borgnine, A. Wilford Brimley and Buck Taylor and broadcast journalist Bill Kurtis.