Press agent, political ad producer and former child actor
Press agent, political ad producer and former child actor Edward “Eddie” Shaw died April 7 at his home in Brogue, Penn., of a hemorrhagic stroke. He was 64.
Shaw, originally from Buffalo, New York, moved to Hollywood in his teens. As one of three children, he moved smoothly into recurring sitcom roles in family-themed shows including “Ozzie and Harriet,” “Father Knows Best,” and “Bachelor Father.”
At 18, he became a production assistant for CBS and by 20 he was a press agent, repping such TV programs as “Bewitched,” “Hawaii Five-O,” “Bonanza,” “My Three Sons” and “Leave It to Beaver.”
He then established his own public relations firm, Edward Shaw & Associates, in Beverly Hills where clients included such entities as Walt Disney, Paramount, Technicolor, Chevrolet and General Motors and stars including Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Chuck Norris, Regis Philbin and Jonathon Winters.
Producer of a documentary about Cuba, featuring Ronald Reagan — his last take prior to his presidency — Shaw became friendly with the new president and the friendship resulted in more than 200 TV and radio commercials for Reagan and the Republican Party produced by Shaw. He also mobilized voters in 1982 with “The California $5 Million Dollar Voter Sweepstakes,” a huge promotional stunt intended to counter voter apathy.
Later, Shaw co-hosted, with wife Ruth “The Ruth and Ed Shaw Radio Show” syndicated program. In addition, Shaw helped with the nonprofit charity run by Ruth, “Hugs Not Drugs.”
A member of Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, American Film Institute, Film Advisory Board, the National Assn. of Television Program Executives, the Screen Actors Guild, and the National Assn. of Talk Show Hosts, he was also a film commissioner for Surinam and Belize.
Besides his wife, he is survived by two daughters, two sons, former wife, Wanda, two stepchildren, four grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.