If I were to say anything about my father, Harold J. Stone, I would say he was a fine actor. He began his career in the 1920s, following his father into the Yiddish theater. He never wanted to be an actor, but a doctor. He graduated from NYU, and continued at the University of Buffalo Medical School until the Depression. When his mother, my grandmother, became ill, he had to drop out of school to return to the only job he knew, acting. From there, he did theater and radio, and then was lured to Los Angeles to work with Humphrey Bogart. He was signed to co-star with him in his next three movies when, unfortunately, Mr. Bogart died after the completion of The Harder They Fall. From there, my dad never stopped working. He was recognized with an Emmy nomination and a Golden Globe nomination.
But most of all, my father was a single parent after the death of my mother in 1960. I think that’s why I feel it’s so important to remember him. His most challenging role was that of father. He didn’t get any awards for that either, but he did his best, and for that I feel that he should be acknowledged.
Jennifer Stone Bosserman,
on behalf of Robert Stone and Michael Stone
I cannot think of another actor, from the early days of live television through the 1970s, who played as many, and as diverse, roles as Harold Stone. He did hundreds of them—both comedic and serious roles. He played sympathetic and villainous characters. If you watched TV in the 1960s, you would see him as a rabbi, a cowboy, and a mobster—all in the same week. He did all kinds of ethnic characters—Russians, Italians, Greeks, even Mexicans. He could play a “red-blooded” American, too.
In the episode of The Nurses that earned him an Emmy nomination, my father played a male nurse in an era during which nursing was virtually an entirely female occupation. Though he didn’t receive the award, he was up against a pretty deep field that included Jack Klugman, James Earl Jones, Rod Steiger, Roddy Mcdowell and Jason Robards.
He always gave a quality performance which is why he was asked to appear and re-appear numerous times on many popular shows such as Bonanza, Gunsmoke and The Untouchables, to name a few.