|Who is it?||Actor, Writer, Producer|
|Birth Day||July 12, 1948|
|Birth Place||Kermit, Texas, United States|
|Age||72 YEARS OLD|
|Died On||August 24, 2017(2017-08-24) (aged 69)\nSanta Barbara, California, United States|
|Cause of death||Throat cancer|
|Occupation||Actor, radio talk show host|
|Spouse(s)||Sally Michelson (m. 1987)|
|Children||3, including J. T. Harding|
Thomas fathered J. T. Harding in an out-of-wedlock relationship, and the child was adopted by another family in Michigan. Thomas and his son spoke about their reunion on the Dr. Phil Show. Harding was the lead singer of the band JTX and is a country music Songwriter. Thomas married Sally Michelson in 1987. They had two sons, Samuel and Jacob.
In 1997, he starred in the television film Killing Mr. Griffin, based on the eponymous novel. In film, he co-starred in Mr. Holland's Opus as a high school coach with a flair for theatricals, and portrayed the Easter Bunny in The Santa Clause 2 and The Santa Clause 3. He was also an annual guest on The Late Show with David Letterman during the Christmas season, where he told a story about how he met Clayton Moore, who portrayed the title character on The Lone Ranger. Beginning in 2005, he hosted The Jay Thomas Show on SiriusXM Satellite Radio, which aired every Friday afternoon on Howard 101.
Thomas made his annual Christmastime appearance with David Letterman for the first time in December 1998. Letterman and one of his other guests that evening, then-New York Jets quarterback Vinny Testaverde, took turns tossing footballs at the Christmas tree across the stage, atop which sat a large meatball. As the two tried to knock off the meatball and failed repeatedly, Thomas came back out to join in the festivities, and knocked the meatball off of the tree. (Thomas had played quarterback on his college football team.)
For every year thereafter, with the exception of 2013, Thomas appeared to re-tell the Lone Ranger story and once again attempt what Letterman calls the "Late Show Quarterback Challenge". For the final appearance of the story in 2014, Thomas was again successful in knocking the meatball off the top of the tree. Thomas missed the 2013 Late Show Christmas episode due to surgery on his throat; John McEnroe took his place and told the Lone Ranger story, then tried, unsuccessfully, to knock the meatball off the tree by hitting tennis balls at it.
He died of throat cancer on August 24, 2017 in Santa Barbara, California at the age of 69.