Stu Nahan as "Skipper Stu"/Courtesy of KCRA
One alert reader - and amateur local-TV historian - who'd prefer to not have his name shouted out here sent a missive to tell us that the Los Angeles Times' obit for Stu Nahan (which The Bee ran) got it wrong.
Well, that's what we at 21Q live for - to right the L.A. Times' wrongs!
Anyway, the L.A. Times wrote of Nahan: "While in Sacramento he was also the host of a children's TV program, appearing as 'Skipper Stu.' He would show cartoons while piloting his boat, the Channel Tender, accompanied by an octopus puppet, O.U. Squid."
No, no , no, says our Sactown TV historian. He writes:
"As I recall, 'Diver Dan,' another kids' show, had the boat named the 'Channel Tender.' He was on Channel 10. (Channel Tender?!...Get it?...Huh, huh?) In real life, he was Norm Bales, staff announcer and morning show host. He later earned a law degree and left television. Sadly, he died a number of years ago. His puppet sidekick was an octopus with the aforementioned name 'O.U. Squid.' (Corny, eh?) O.U. was pretty much just dangled on a string by a production crew member standing on a ladder who also provided the voice."
We found the ocular proof of our reader's claim with this clipping:
Photo courtesy of planetxmagazine.com