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Gordon Kay, 88; Produced Westerns for Republic, Universal

PASSINGS

March 23, 2005|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Gordon Kay, 88, a Republic Pictures and Universal producer who specialized in westerns, died of undisclosed causes March 8 at the Motion Picture & Television Fund hospital in Woodland Hills.

Kay, who launched his movie career as a gofer on westerns at Republic in 1939, worked his way up to producing the first 26 Allan "Rocky" Lane westerns beginning in 1947.

Moving to Universal in 1955, he produced seven westerns starring Audie Murphy, as well as several starring Fred MacMurray, Rory Calhoun and Tony Young. During his 12 years at Universal, he also produced non-westerns such as "Twilight for the Gods," starring Rock Hudson, and "Fluffy," starring Tony Randall.

Born in Montreal, Kay grew up in New York and Massachusetts. After graduating from Williams College in 1938, he worked as a reader and gofer for a Broadway producer. During World War II, he served in the Coast Guard off the Atlantic Coast.

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