Brick Township High School, 346 Chambersbridge Rd, Brick, NJ 08723
Alan Palo (March 18, 1962 . January 1, 1995) was an actor, known for Tales from the Crypt (1989), Blind Date (1994) and Prehysteria! 2 (1994).
Alan W. Palo, a boisterous actor whose credits included Murphy Brown and Tats From the Crypt, died on New Year's Day 1995 of AIDS complications in Cinnaminson.
Palo, often described as a handsome Sal Mineo lookalike, became interested in acting as a youngster growing up in Brick, NJ, when his older sister Linda got the high school lead to the suspense thriller Wait Until Dark. He was mesmenzed, his father recalled. "He knew from that moment on that be wanted to be an actor," Ben Palo said.
When Palo was a freshman at Brick High School, he got a bit part playing a king's adviser in the school play. By the time he was a junior, he was playing George in Of Mice and Men and singing in Brigadoon. Palo's voice was a beautiful baritone that soared across the stage and auditorium, said his brother Tom.
After high school. Palo joined the Red Oak Music Theater in Lakewood, NJ, and performed in musicals.
He also dealt blackjack in Atlantic City to earn enough money to buy a car He then drove crosscountry to Hollywood to become an actor.
Palo didn't know anyone there but he didn't care. Of course, his first job was as a waiter, at the Sunset Marquee. He served pasta and salads to stars like Susan Sarandon, Michael Bolton and Bruce Springsteen.
Funny and incorrigible he did a mean imitation of Bette Davis. He actually met Davis one day. She wore her trademark floppy hat and sun-glasses. "Hey. you're Bette Davis," he called out. Without breaking stride, she called back. "That is my name."
Palo's father, an ex-Marine, recalled how his son had helped him understand and accept his son's homosexuality. "When my son told me. I met his friends and all these wonderful people," said his father. "I found out how ignorant I was."
Palo earned his actor's screen card and began landing roles, playing a gardener opposite Delta Burke in the mystery series Diagnosis Murder, a politically correct gay man in Murphy Brown, a hero in America's Most Wanted, and a murderous lumberjack In Tales From the Crypt.
Palo became sick in May 1994. He returned to New Jersey where his brother took care of him. An actor to the end, he traded barbs with his brother. They sometimes pretended to be the Hudson sisters of the Bette Davis-Joan Crawford thriller, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?
"Dad, not everybody can live out their dream." Bert Palo recalled his son saying, even after he was found to be HIV-positive. "If I die tomorrow, I'm doing what I wanted."
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