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Shelley Osterloh Reporting...One of Hollywood's biggest names celebrates a big birthday today. Bob Hope turns 100 years old.
Quite possibly the most honored entertainer in history, Bob Hope has traveled the world sharing his humor with military troops and diverse audiences. And he has often, over the years, come to Utah.
Bob Hope is an entertainment pioneer -- in vaudeville, on radio, then television. And he has made more than 50 films.
But it was his USO tours that made him world famous. He entertained troops during World War II, the Korean War, Viet Nam, and the 1991 Gulf War.
Hope was also a frequent visitor to Utah. He came in 1947 to raise money to fight cancer. And in the ‘60’s to sign books at ZCMI and perform at the Utah State Fair.
In 1975, Hope became an honorary Utahn at Utah State University.
And he was well known on Utah golf courses, playing with local officials and celebrities -- in this case, to raise money for Division of Indian Affairs.
In the 70's he appeared on the Donny and Marie Osmond show. And in 1978 he performed at the University of Utah.
Bob Hope, Comedian: " I WAS OUT THERE TODAY DOING ONE OF THEIR SHOWS WITH THE OSMONDS AND ITS REAL SWINGING TOWN PROVO, IN PROVO...OVALTINE IS CONSIDERED AN UPPER.” (LAUGHTER)
Hope had a knack for finding topical local humor. And Utah audiences loved it.
Bob Hope, Comedian: "I VISITED THE GREAT SALT LAKE THIS MORNING AND I ASKED A MAN THERE... WHY HE WAS POURING A BOTTLE OF TEQUILA INTO THE LAKE. HE SAID HE WANTED TO CELEBRATE MEXICAN INDEPENDENCE DAY BY MAKING THE WORLD LARGEST MARGARITA.”
Bob Hope, Comedian: "HERE AT THE SPECIAL EVENTS CENTER OF THE UNIVERSITY OF UTAH IN THIS PRETTY TOWN OF SALT LAKE -- WHICH IS THE GATE WAY TO OGDEN. (LAUGHTER) Hope sings: “I WILL PROUDLY SAY THAT SALT LAKE IS MY FAVORITE TOWN" (applause)