Richard Dawson Dies at 79

Former Family Feud host Richard Dawson, also known to many of us as Cockney POW Cpl. Peter Newkirk on Hogan’s Heroes, died this weekend of complications related to esophageal cancer at Ronald Reagan Memorial hospital, his son Gary said. He was 79.The popular, wisecracking host was quite possibly the friendliest host in Family Feud history, kissing every female contestant. Dawson always explained, “I kissed them for love and luck.” Executive producer Howard Felsher estimated that Dawson had kissed “somewhere in the vicinity of 20,000” by the end of his time on the show.

Dawson is survived by his two sons Mark Dawson and Gary Dawson, from his previous marriage to Diana Dors and his five grandchildren: Lindsay Dors Dawson, Tyler Emm Dawson, Emma Rose Dawson, Walter “Melons” Dawson, and Lauren Dawson.