On a sadder note: Six million dollar man’s boss “Oscar Goldman” actor Richard Anderson passes away – as does our old boss Andrew Gleadow

by | Oct 30, 2017 | On a Sadder Note, Seradata News, Space Arts

We are a sad to say a belated goodbye to Richard Anderson, 91, the actor who played the “Oscar Goldman” boss character in the very famous fictional 1970s TV series the “Six Million Dollar Man”.  He died at the end of August. The series followed the adventures of astronaut and test pilot Steve Austin, played by Lee Majors, who suffers major injuries in a NASA lifting body spaceplane crash and then was rebuilt with a super-strength “bionic” robotic arm and legs (and eye). In the plot, his bodily repairs cost US$6 million – now about US$38 million in today’s money – hence the name of the series.

Oscar Goldman as played by Richard Anderson Courtesy: bionicwikia.com

On the subject of former bosses, Seradata team would also like to say a sad goodbye and thank you to Andrew Gleadow, one of our former bosses when the Seradata team was at Airclaims. Andrew, who sadly recently died from cancer at the age of 79, had a varied career starting as a pilot in the Royal Navy’s Fleet Air Arm, before working as a pilot for Shell, then as a chartered engineer, and finally as the Commercial Director at Airclaims.

When it comes to escapes from air crashes, Andrew could teach a few things to the Steve Austin fictional character above. His claim to fame was that as a Royal Navy jet pilot he (along with his navigator Peter King) ejected from a crashing Buccaneer S1 fighter bomber when one of its two Gyron Junior engines suddenly lost thrust (as they were apt to do). Andrew’s aircraft was doing a touch and go landing after he missed the fourth wire on the aircraft carrier HMS Eagle in the South China Sea at the time. His 1965 ejection photo reportedly adorned the foyer of Martin Baker – the manufacturer of the very helpful ejection seat.

While Andrew Gleadow’s crew mates were relieved he and his fellow aviator Peter King had survived, they were also annoyed.  Andrew’s Buccaneer aircraft had been carrying their clothes and golf clubs inside its rotating bomb bay, which it had been transferring from a land base when it crashed.

Andrew Gleadow and his navigator Peter King depart their crashing Buccaneer S2. Courtesy: via Peter King


…There go the golf clubs, as Andrew Gleadow’s Buccaneer S1 crashes into the sea. Courtesy: via Peter King

Despite being injured in the ejection, Andrew was able to carry on with his naval aviation career and was briefly involved in test flying the Buccaneer S2 which, with new Spey turbofan engines replacing the underpowered Gyron Junior turbojet engines, came to be regarded as an excellent low strike aircraft and has claims to be the best one ever.

Andrew Gleadow

Being a good naval man, Andrew liked his staff at Airclaims to look smart and presentable and would slightly admonish you (especially this writer) if you were not. Of course, being a Yorkshireman with a chuckling sense of humour, he was, of course, sometimes deliberately difficult to get your expenses passed him (“what – you had dessert as well?”). Thankfully, he was also susceptible to the Jedi mind control technique which usually got these through.

Then again, he knew how it was.  Once, after a pair of us put in the expenses for sales celebratory lunch at a top rated restaurant in Chelsea, Andrew did have the kindness and wisdom once to remind us to at least put down that we were entertaining a client if we wanted to get our expenses through accounts! God bless Andrew.

A thank you to Andrew Gleadow and a tribute to him, and to all the other brave naval aviators who have had to do those risky arrester hook landings on aircraft carriers.

Post script:  We are also sad to say good by to comedy actor John Hillerman, 84, who made his name as Magnum PI’s uptight British housemate “Higgins” in the Hawaii-based detective TV series starring Tom Selleck. Hillerman, who was actually from Texas, played uptight managerial types before in comedy films whether as the bereft hotel manager in What’s Up Doc (1972) or as a townsman in Blazing Saddles (1974).

About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned SpaceTrak Launch & Satellite Database. Trusted by 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, SpaceTrak is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to www.seradata.com/spacetrak

Related Articles

On a sadder note: “The Mouse on the Moon” actor Bernard Cribbins dies

We are sad to note that veteran comedy actor and narrator Bernard Cribbins OBE has died at the age of Read more

Movie Review – Top Gun: Maverick’s “633 Squadron” plan is very good but whatever happened to “Charlie”?

For those of us who were teenage boys when it was released, Tony Scott’s Top Gun (1986) was an inspirational movie that Read more

Movie Review: Don’t Look Up amuses (& worries) as a satire dressed up as a space disaster movie

Don't Look Up (2021) has become the must see movie this Christmas...but not everyone likes it. Produced and aired by Read more

As “Captain Kirk” boldly goes sub-orbitally into space UK’s Prince William lashes out at space tourism & gets a “photon torpedo” fired back

William Shatner, the Canadian-born actor who played Captain James T. Kirk in the Star Trek TV and film series, finally Read more

Movie Review: James Bond gets emotional in No Time To Die

This writer sometimes likes to list his top five James Bond movies, partly to work out what makes a good Read more

When it comes to spaceflight “wings” are not quite what they used to be

The recent decision by the FAA not to award "astronaut wings" to suborbital space tourist "passengers" of Blue Origin and Read more

Is unbelievable space adventure Moonraker the most influential James Bond adventure? Well maybe…on the rocket ignition front

An article by Tom Fordy in the Daily Telegraph declared the James Bond space-plotted movie Moonraker (1979) as the most Read more

On a sadder note: James Bond actor Sir Sean Connery passes away at the age of 90

"Shurely shum mishtake Mish Moneypenny," as Sir Sean Connery might have said is his oft-imitated lispy Scottish accent, but we Read more