The man who played "Bozo the Clown" for more than a decade passed away Tuesday at his Boston home.
Frank Avruch died of heart disease, his family told WCVB-TV — the station he worked at for decades.
Avruch played Bozo the Clown from 1959 to 1970, a clown character particularly popular in the U.S. in the 1960s because of widespread franchising in television. Avruch became the first nationally-syndicated Bozo the Clown.
"He had a heart of gold," manager Stuart Hersh told The Associated Press on Wednesday, "He brought the Bozo the Clown character to life better than anyone else's portrayal of Bozo the Clown."
Avruch also was a contributor to WCVB-TV for more than 40 years as a host of "Man About Town" and "The Great Entertainment."
He was an active philanthropist and a board member of UNICEF'S New England chapter. He toured the world performing as Bozo the clown for UNICEF.
"He touched so many people with his portrayal," Hersh said.
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Avruch is survived by his wife Betty, two sons Matthew and Steven and several grandchildren.