Larry Hagman funeral: his ashes to be scattered at Southfork
Larry Hagman’s long-term manager and close friend Gene Yusem confirmed there were plans to commemorate the actor, who died aged 81 on Friday, by scattering his ashes at the Dallas mansion, Southfork Ranch.
As fans continued to flock to the site, Gene Yusem said: “It sounds like it will happen and I wouldn’t be surprised if it does.
“Larry had such a great sense of humor, he would have loved it.”
The Dallas star, known for playing as slick oilman J.R. Ewing and Maj. Tony Nelson on I Dream of Jeannie, died of complications from cancer at Medical City Dallas Hospital.
Larry Hagman had been filming the new edition of Dallas for the TNT network while battling throat cancer.
Close to the end, his family and friends, including co-stars Linda Gray and Patrick Duffy, were by his side.
Yesterday, Linda Gray, 72, who plays J.R’s notorious ex-wife Sue Ellen, tweeted: “We had a beautiful gathering this morning on the Dallas set where cast and crew shared stories about Larry Hagman.”
Larry Hagman’s personal manager John Castonia said there will be a private memorial for the actor, which is believed to be this weekend.
The star’s marriage to his wife Maj was a great Hollywood love story. Had he lived another month, the couple would have celebrated their 59th wedding anniversary.
Yesterday, Gene Yusem said Maj Hagman, who lives in California, was “doing well”.
Larry Hagman had planned to headline the Greater Dallas Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association’s A.W.A.R.E. Luncheon on April 5. His topic was to be how he and Maj were living with the disease.
Kay Hammond, local president of AWARE (Alzheimer’s Women’s Association for Resources and Education) they still planned to honor the couple, telling Dallas News: “We will now do a retrospective of their life together, honoring her and remembering him.”
Two weeks ago, Kay Hammond and her daughter Kim Gatlin, author of the novel Good Christian Bitches, were in Tyler to see Larry Hagman’s one-man show, The Confessions of a Texas S.O.B.
“It was delightful, and he was going to edit it to run just 20 minutes for the luncheon,” Kay Hammond said.
The history of Southfork Ranch began in 1978 when Lorimar Productions chose the North Texas mansion as the site for a new CBS series, only originally envisaged as a five-part drama.
However, the series became a hit and counted millions of fans across the U.S. and in the 95 foreign countries where it was aired.
The original Dallas ran from 1979-1991, dominating ratings, inspiring a prime-time soap craze, and giving rise to “Who Shot J.R.?” mania.
Larry Hagman was at the centre of it – and in 1980, 83 million people tuned in to find out just who had shot the evil millionaire.
Even though the episodes were filmed at a studio, Southfork always remained the Dallas backdrop and quickly became a tourist Mecca, even offering weddings.
The original owner of the ranch and his family were actually in residence at Southfork as the filming began.
When requests for private parties began to pour in, tents were erected and a small party pavilion was built to accommodate these types of events. However, tourism finally took its toll on the family, as it became increasingly hard to live privately in what had become Dallas’ leading visitor attraction.
In 1985, Southfork became strictly a tourist attraction and event location. The mansion was opened to the public for the first time. A 63,000 square foot conference and event center was built to accommodate several thousand people for special events and functions.
A rodeo arena, which was originally constructed for the filming of “Dallas” rodeos, began to host open competition rodeos as well as private “showdeos”.
In June 1992, Arizona businessman Rex Maughan bought the property and it continues to be a tourist trap and conference centre.