How Lung Cancer Took Away the Life of Gary Crosby, Bing Crosby’s Eldest Son

Gary Crosby was a singer, actor, and author who was best known as the eldest son of the legendary entertainer Bing Crosby. He had a tumultuous relationship with his father, which he revealed in his controversial memoir, Going My Own Way. He also had a successful career in the entertainment industry, appearing in several films, TV shows, and radio programs. He died of lung cancer at the age of 62 in 1995. In this article, we will explore his life, career, and death in more detail.

Early Life and Family

Gary Crosby was born on June 27, 1933, in Los Angeles, California. He was the first of four sons born to Bing Crosby and his first wife, Dixie Lee Crosby, who was also a singer and actress. His brothers were Phillip, Dennis, and Lindsay, who formed a harmony singing group with him called The Crosby Boys in the 1940s and 1950s.

Gary Crosby made his film debut at age 9 playing himself in his father’s Star Spangled Rhythm. He had child acting parts in a few more movies, such as Duffy’s Tavern and Out of This World. He also performed on several variety programs with his father, such as ABC’s The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom and NBC’s The Ford Show, Starring Tennessee Ernie Ford.

As a teenager, he duetted with his father on two songs, Sam’s Song and Play a Simple Melody, which became the first double-sided gold record in history. He also recorded duets with Louis Armstrong and Sammy Davis Jr.

However, behind the scenes, Gary Crosby had a strained relationship with his father, who he claimed was abusive, cold, and distant. He also struggled with alcoholism and drug addiction, which he inherited from his mother, who died of ovarian cancer in 1952.

Career Highlights

In the mid-1950s, Gary Crosby had his own radio program, the Gary Crosby Show on CBS. The musical variety program debuted on June 6, 1954, as a summer replacement for Bing Crosby’s show.

He was briefly under contract to 20th Century-Fox in the late 1950s. He appeared in a number of supporting roles for the studio, normally comedies in which Crosby played a soldier: Mardi Gras with Pat Boone; Holiday for Lovers, as Carol Lynley’s love interest; A Private’s Affair with Sal Mineo; The Right Approach with Frankie Vaughan.

He is perhaps best-remembered for his recurring roles as Eddie the scheming bellhop on The Bill Dana Show and Officer Edward “Ed” Wells on NBC’s Adam-12 from 1968 to 1975. He also appeared on several other shows produced by Jack Webb’s Mark VII Limited (including an episode of Dragnet 1969 and five episodes of Emergency!).

He also appeared in three episodes of The Rockford Files. In 1965, he made a guest appearance on Perry Mason as singer Jazbo Williams in The Case of the Frustrated Folk Singer. His most recent film was The Night Stalker in 1987.

Memoir and Death

In 1983, Gary Crosby published his autobiography, Going My Own Way, which said Bing Crosby had been abusive to him and his three brothers. The book caused a sensation and sparked a debate over the accuracy of his claims. Some of his relatives and friends defended Bing Crosby’s reputation, while others supported Gary Crosby’s allegations.

The book also revealed that Gary Crosby had been an alcoholic since he was 15 and that he had attempted suicide several times. He said he had been sober since 1967 after joining Alcoholics Anonymous.

Gary Crosby died on August 24, 1995, at a hospital in Burbank, California from lung cancer at the age of 62. He was survived by his third wife Carol Crosby (whom he divorced shortly before his death), his son Steven (from his first marriage to Barbara Cosentino), and his half-siblings Harry III , Mary , and Nathaniel (from Bing Crosby’s second marriage to Kathryn Grant).


Gary Crosby was a talented and troubled entertainer who lived in the shadow of his famous father. He had a successful career in music, film, TV, and radio but also suffered from addiction and abuse. He died of lung cancer in 1995 after writing a memoir that exposed his family secrets. He left behind a legacy of controversy and controversy.

Doms Desk

Leave a Comment