Tom Bosley, 83, a Tony Award-winning stage actor died Oct. 19 at a hospital in Rancho Mirage, Calif. He had lung cancer. He was born October 1, 1927 in Chicago. In 1960, he won Tony Award for best featured actor in a musical. New York Times theater critic Brooks Atkinson wrote that Mr. Bosley captured the “abundant energy and explosive personality” of the role.
After Navy service, he returned to his home town in 1947 and signed up for radio announcing classes in the hope of being a sportscaster.
“I thought I had a better chance at acting, so in 1950 I flipped a coin to decide if I wanted to hit New York or California,” he told the Toronto Star in 1986. “When the coin came up California, I headed for New York.”
From 1984 to 1988, he played the recurring role of a Maine sheriff named Amos Tucker on the long-running detective drama “Murder, She Wrote.” He was typically outsleuthed by the widowed mystery writer Jessica Fletcher, played by Angela Lansbury.
He left the series to appear in a rare leading role on “Father Dowling Mysteries,” which ran until 1991.
In 1962, Mr. Bosley married dancer Jean Eliot. Two years after being widowed in 1978, he married actress-producer Patricia Carr. Besides his wife, of Palm Springs, Calif., survivors include a daughter from his first marriage, Amy Baer; two stepdaughters; a brother; and seven grandchildren.