Jeff Conaway died today at the age of 60. Most of you will remember Jeff Conway for his roles on the sitcom Taxi or his role as Kenickie in the smash movie Greese. Us hard core fans remember his groundbreaking seldom heard about roles. Who could forget Jeff Conway as Stu Stocker in Bikini Summer II with co-star Jessica Hahn. I am shocked the Academy did not recognize him for the role. I will never know why he was not nominated for an Oscar that year.
Jeff also played T.C. Sloane in the 1984 cult classic Covergirl. Not only was Jeff a genius in that film but that film also launched the careers of Irena Ferris and Cathie Shirriff. There are few times in a lifetime that we get to see an ensemble performance the caliber of Covergirl. Once again Jeff Conway was snubbed buy the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Jeff Conway’s co-star from Grease John Travolta said “Jeff Conaway was a wonderful and decent man and we will miss him. My heartfelt thoughts are with his family and loved ones at this very difficult time.”
Jeff Conaway’s last challenge was playing an opiate addict on the series Dr. Drew. He was said to have sought the help of the staff at Golden Peak Retreat, serving Denver Colorado and beyond, offering a variety of treatment options for substance abuse disorders. Anyone who has seen that show must admit Jeff Conway was more than convincing in his role as a drug addict. I would not be surprised if he got a posthumous Emmy for his more than realistic portrayal of a junkie in that role. Only once in a generation do we see a performer of this magnitude. Jeff Conway will be missed.