Many of us are old enough to remember Jerry Lewis growing up as one of the funniest people on TV (movie re-runs). I most admired him for his devotion to the yearly Muscular Dystrophy drives. I'm betting scores of comedians we admire today were inspired by Mr. Lewis. I recently saw him play a bit character in a show and didn't recognize him at first, but once I did I was heart warmed that he was still 'out there' entertaining.
As a former comedy club owner, who has had Jerry in my club, I have a slightly different perspective. I'll share it here, and hopefully won't start getting any "hate" mail.
Jerry was a great entertainer. Always put on great shows, and left his audiences wanting more. In his early years, he was a comic genius. Lots of comedians got inspiration from him.
The downside - when he was at a club or doing an interview, he treated the staff like a jerk. Great on stage,,, somewhat of an A-hole off the stage. I put him in the same category as Gallagher. Both put on GREAT shows, but my staff would cringe every time they walked though the club doors.
An interesting bit of trivia about Jerry,,,,,, He never wore a pair of socks twice. He wore them, washed them, and donated them....
As a Grand Tall Cedar of the Tall Cedars of Lebanon, a Masonic appendant body, whose sole charity is the MDA, I and my Forest will miss and cherish the work he did for the MDA. For man y years he was the face of muscular dystrophy and did an immeasurable amount to raise awareness for children with MD. God Speed Mr. Lewis.