(CBS/AP) The radio and television voice-over star whose work included the animated characters Gumby and Speedy Alka-Seltzer has died in Southern California at 85. Dick Beals was 85.
A friend, Peter Gorman, tells the Los Angeles Times that Beals died in the northern San Diego County community of Vista.
Beals' was the original voice of the title character on "The Gumby Show" in the late 1950s. He was the unseen pitchman in more than 3,000 commercials for such products as Oscar Mayer and Campbell's Soup. He also did the voice of the first Davey in the 1960s TV series "Davey and Goliath."
Beals often got jobs that called for him to sound like a child because he suffered from a glandular condition. His voice hadn't changed since elementary school. Because of this glandular condition, Beals stood at 4 feet 6 inches tall and weighed 70 pounds.
"He was one of the great voice actors of all time," Ron Simon, curator of TV and radio at the Paley Center for Media, told the Los Angeles Times. "He was one of those anonymous people who pioneered what animation would become today."