When he was 18 years old, Little Dougie had a real privilege. His friend and mentor, "Sweet Dick" Whittington, was added to the cast of Laugh-In, then the number one show on television. In the cast picture above, that's Sweet Dick at the top of the ladder and the picture. As Whittington's guest, Little Dougie got to come down to NBC in Beautiful Downtown Burbank, and hang out on stage 4, where Laugh-In was shot, every Wednesday and watch the show being shot. Here's a picture of Little Dougie with Sweet Dick in 1972, when they invaded and conquered Santa Catalina Island, Dougie's sole military service.
There was no real studio audience (Shooting was slow, and often lasted well into the night.), just guests who stayed for as long or as short as they cared to. Dougie always stayed until the bitter end, as there was no where else on earth he would rather have been. He was soaking up knowledge, and hanging out with the funniest and most famous folk in show business. He got to see such guests as Jack Benny (or as Dougie sometimes called him, "God"), Laurence Harvey, Sammy Davis Jr., Victor Borge, Flip Wilson, Sonny & Cher, Paul Winchell, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Gina Lollobrigida, and many, many others shoot guest spots.
And if his work as a comedian, comedy writer, and TV director weren't enough, do you know what his job was before he became a comic? He was a bartender! This wasn't a man. This was a God! It was realized that he was a gifted comic when Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis played the club where he bartended, and Dick behind the bar was getting more laughs than Martin & Lewis, not that there's much difficulty being funnier than Jerry Lewis. Naturally Jerry wanted him fired, but Dean, a far more generous and selfless man than Jerry "World's Biggeest Ego With World's Smallest Justification" Lewis, helped him connect with a partner and launch a career.
So now, one last time, let us "Say Goodnight Dick." You were one hell of a funny man.