McLean Stevenson

stevenson1November 14, 1927 – February 15, 1996

Edgar McLean Stevenson trodded the boards for years in Summer Stock theatre and fledgling TV programs. He eventually established himself as a comedy writer and occasional performer before landing a guest spot on Marlo Thomas’ That Girl. This led to a starring role in The Doris Day Show, which led to the role for which he will always be remembered: Col. Henry Blake on the seminal sitcom M*A*S*H. For three seasons, Stevenson earned laughs as Col. Blake but began to resent the character’s role as a “lowly” ensemble member. He wanted to be the star, so he walked away. His departure from the show – culminating in the surprise revelation of Blake dying in an off-screen plane crash – became one of the most memorable moments in television history.  Stevenson never again found the kind of success he did on M*A*S*H and regretted leaving the show for the rest of his career. In 1996, after undergoing surgery for bladder cancer, he died of a heart attack at the age of 68.


Forest Lawn Memorial Park – Hollywood Hills, CA

Specific Location

Courts of Remembrance, Columbarium of Valor, niche G64649; Inside this small columbarium on the south end of the Courts of Remembrance, McLean’s niche is on the right wall as you enter, 2 spaces from the corner and 3 rows down from the top.


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