Jerry Lewis – King of Comedy and “humanitarian”?

The world pays incredible homage to entertainment celebrities, but they’re all sinners and as messed up as everyone else, perhaps even more so.

I’ve been watching some video interviews of Jerry Lewis recently. Back in the early-1960s, only a handful of entertainers were as popular as Jerry Lewis (1926-2017). Jerry began his career as a comedian in 1946, with Dean Martin as his straight-man partner. The two brought their successful nightclub act to Hollywood and made 14 films together. They parted company in 1956 and Lewis would go on to produce and/or direct twenty films.

I remember seeing Jerry’s “The Nutty Professor” (1963) at the drive-in with my family and in my seven-year-old mind, I thought it was the best movie of all time. I loved Jerry’s silly slapstick humor.

Jerry was also known for his humanitarian work, especially for hosting the Muscular Dystrophy Telethon each year, from 1966 to 2010. However, Jerry was also famous for being a temperamental diva. In his interviews, he exudes a pompousness that’s unmatched. Jerry defined the term, “full of himself.”

Lewis’ wife, Patti, filed for divorce in 1980 after 35 years of marriage, citing infidelity. Lewis subsequently excluded all five* of his sons with Patti from his will (see photo above). Nice guy. When Jerry died in 2017, everything went to his second wife and their adopted daughter.

But that wasn’t the only carnage. Lewis’ daughter from an extra-marital affair walks the streets of Philadelphia as a homeless person. Jerry never publicly acknowledged her.

How could a celebrated “humanitarian” be so cruel to his own flesh and blood? We are all sinners and we all need to be saved by Jesus Christ.

*Lewis’ youngest son, Joseph, committed suicide in 2009.

12 thoughts on “Jerry Lewis – King of Comedy and “humanitarian”?

  1. Going to read this shortly; today I’m taking it easy, the weekend of teaching couple’s meeting on Friday night, Saturday youth group in the morning, and Sunday morning service and Sunday afternoon guest speaking in another church really burned me out with the studies for those messages and also counseling and ministering to people over the phone and text. So I’m enjoying the couch reading! lol

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  2. I don’t know Jerry Lewis but this is very sad…very sad of a man and a father and a person! How could he not acknowledge his daughter? Or exclude all five sons from his will???
    What kind of man????

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yup, we know the heart is desperately wicked and capable of all sorts of evil, but it’s hard to imagine a father turning an ice cold shoulder to six of his seven children.

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  3. Reminds me of a certain English TV celebrity (although he was much worse and it makes people angry to think of him now) awarded the OBE and also a knighthood by the Queen. Buildings were even named after him. (Not a good idea.) He raised over 40 million for charities but it later transpired that he was guilty of the most heinous abuse against vulnerable children. True, most of us have never dropped into such depths of depravity but every individual needs salvation – and the Lord can make foulest clean if they repent and put their trust in Him this side of eternity.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the UK perspective, Elizabeth. It’s guaranteed that sin, big and small, will eventually find a person out. The world didn’t learn of Lewis’ estrangement from his children until after his death. I wonder if Lewis ever had moments of honest introspection, when he contemplated his tireless efforts for “his” Muscular Dystrophy kids in light of his estrangement from all of his biological children?

      Liked by 1 person

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