Johnny Crawford, original member of The Mickey Mouse Club, dead at age 75

The child actor who played the young son in The Rifleman TV series had been living in a "memory care" residence before his death from COVID-19

In a reminder of a youth that no longer exists, Johnny Crawford, who played the son of the star of TV’s “The Rifleman” so long ago, died at age 75 this week at an extended care facility in California.

One of the original members of The Mickey Mouse Club and an actor nominated for en Emmy at age 13 during the TV series with Chuck Connors, Crawford died from pneumonia after infection of the COVID-19 virus.

Reports People magazine:

In addition to a prolific acting career, Crawford was also a musician, and had a recording contract with Del-Fi Records. His song “Cindy’s Birthday” made the Billboard 100 in 1962, peaking at No. 8.

Prior to contracting COVID-19, Crawford had been living in a memory care residence. He was moved to a smaller care home, where his family and friends would do “window and patio visits for his safety” during the pandemic, his family said. It was not clear when he contracted the virus.


Wife Amy and I were discussing an article she read about a crew that helped nurse a Mako sharp back to life and, when they released him, he turned and bit the boat. Then we realized that Richard Dreyfuss, one of the younger members of the cast, was about the only one of the film’s stars of Jaws, was still alive. Robert Shaw, Roy Scheider and others are gone.

Stephen Spielberg, the “wonder-kid” director, is a year younger than Crawford.

Where has the time gone?

Johnny Crawford speaks at his star unveiling ceremony at The Walk of Western Stars on April 21, 2016 in Newhall, California. (Photo by Tasia Wells/Getty Images)

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