"Nobody will ever know I existed. Nothing to leave behind me. Nothing to pass on. Nobody to mourn me. That’s the bitterest blow of all."
- Tony Hancock (1924-1968), suicide note.
Tony Hancock was a British actor and comedian whose radio and TV comedy shows of the late 1950's and early 1960's, especially Hancock's Half Hour, were original, innovative and highly rated. Continually demonised by depression and excessive introspection in his personal life, his career went into a slide when he split from his writers Galton and Simpson (who later created a rival show, Steptoe and Son) and when he dumped series regulars such as Sid James. His decline was made worse by alcoholism. In 1968 he travelled to Australia to make a 13 part series, Hancock Down Under, for Channel 7. He had made only 3 programs when he was found dead in his flat in Belevue Hill. His suicide note contained the above words. In a 2005 poll to find 'The Comedian's Comedian' Hancock was voted the twelfth greatest comedian by fellow comics and 'comedy insiders'.