For those of united state of a particular age, the sound that the wilhelm Tell Overture and also the sight of a masked rider top top a white steed galloping end dusty hills brings back happy memories of Saturday morning television.

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The abc television series The Lone Ranger to be made from 1949 – 1957 and also starred Clayton Moore as the key man and Jay Silverheels together his faithful companion Tonto.

The display was hugely popular. If you mention The Lone Ranger to most people, it’s more than likely Clayton Moore they’ll remember. However, the very first screen incarnation that the masked guy of an enig was played by one actor who went ~ above to join the us Marines and died after fighting because that the tiny Pacific island that Tinian.


Clayton Moore as the Lone Ranger and Silver indigenous a an individual appearance booking at satisfied Island (Massachusetts amusement park), Wakefield Massachusetts.Clayton Moore together the Lone Ranger and Silver from a personal appearance booking at pleasure Island (Massachusetts amusement park), Wakefield Massachusetts.

The Lone Ranger to be initially developed by George Washington Trendle, the owner that radio station WXYZ in Detroit. Trendle want an exciting radio collection in i beg your pardon the key character would certainly combine elements of Zorro and Robin Hood.

Under his direction a new hero to be created: one ex-Texas Ranger that wore a mask, never ever revealed his true identity and traveled the Old West to the right wrongs and also aiding the helpless.

Clayton Moore as the Lone Ranger and Jay Silverheels together Tonto. Moore is talk Silver, if Silverheels is riding Scout.Clayton Moore together the Lone Ranger and Jay Silverheels together Tonto. Moore is talk Silver, while Silverheels is riding Scout.

The radio show was first broadcast in 1933. By 1937, it to be so renowned that Republic pictures paid Trendle over $18,000 (a vast amount in ~ the time) for the right to make a movie serial version. The serial to be planned to consist the 15 gripping episodes through titles such as The Steaming Cauldron, Wheels the Disaster, and Flaming Fury.

The Lone Ranger to be played in the serial by numerous actors since the character was greatly masked in all scenes. However, Republic planned to unmask the Lone Ranger in the last episode, The critical of the Rangers.

Trendle no happy about this. In the radio series, the identity of the masked male was never ever revealed. But Republic insisted, and in the final episode of the serial it was revealed that the Lone Ranger was, in fact, Allen King, played by gibbs Lee Berrien Powell.

Powell had appeared in little parts in a number of Republic pictures, but The Lone Ranger to be his first starring role. The whole serial was filmed in the month the December 1937 and also Powell to be paid just $100 a week for his donation – a tiny portion of the full cost that the serial which amounted to $170,000.

The serial to be released in February 1938 and proved to be wildly popular. It was a massive financial success for Republic.

Powell went on come make one more serial v Republic, The Fighting adversary Dogs, whereby he play the lead role as lieutenant Tom Grayson.

Poster because that the 1938 film The Fighting devil Dogs.Poster because that the 1938 movie The Fighting evil one Dogs.

Grayson was a US marine officer based in Singapore who found himself fighting against one the the very first masked supervillains, The Lightning, who dark cape and helmet are claimed by some to have actually been the catalyst for Darth Vader.

However, as soon as Republic made decision to make a 2nd Lone Ranger serial in 1939, Powell make a severe mistake – the asked for an ext money. Republic was giving him simply $150 every week but, considering how much money the very first serial had made for the studio, Powell held out for more.

Unfortunately, display actors were pertained to as interchangeable earlier in those days. Republic simply cast another of your cowboy actors, Bob Livingston, in the title duty in The Lone Ranger Rides Again.

Lobby card for the 1939 film The Lone Ranger Rides Again. Chapter 5 “Agents that Deceit”.Lobby map for the 1939 movie The Lone Ranger Rides Again. Thing 5 “Agents that Deceit”.

After that, Powell uncovered it difficult to obtain film roles. Instead, he took to working as a stunt driver in a variety of circuses, billing himself together The original Lone Ranger of Talking snapshot Fame. He would gallop into the circus ring top top a white steed shouting “Hi-Yo Silver!” while the orchestra played the william Tell Overture.

Lobby map for the 1940 film hi Yo Silver. The full-length movie was produced with footage from the 1938 serial The Lone Ranger.Lobby card for the 1940 film hello Yo Silver. The full-length movie was produced with footage from the 1938 serial The Lone Ranger.

In respectable 1942, Powell enlisted in the united state Marines. After completing straightforward training, he was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 18th Marines (Engineers), second Marine department based in ~ Camp Elliott in California.

Powell witnessed combat on Tarawa in 1943 and also on Saipan in 1944. ~ that, that took part in the intrusion of the small island of Tinian in the north Marianas in July and August 1944.

Tinian to be strategically important due to the fact that it was around 1,500 miles (2,414 kilometers) indigenous mainland Japan. This made the a viable place for a staging base for US heavy bombers. The would ultimately be used as the base from which the very first US atom attack, on the city that Hiroshima, to be launched.

The fighting ~ above Tinian was commonly bloody and intense. The Japanese garrison comprised 8,000 men before the attack. Only 250 endured to end up being prisoners of war. Three-hundred and also twenty-six Marines passed away during the battle.

Marines mopping increase Tinian IslandMarines mopping increase Tinian Island

When it to be announced in late August the 35-year-old Sergeant Lee Powell had passed away on Tinian, it to be assumed by many people ago home the he had been killed in combat. The was hidden in the USMC Cemetery ~ above Tinian, but his stays were later on moved to the nationwide Cemetery the the Pacific in Honolulu.

It wasn’t until the publishing of a book, Stars in the Corps: Movie gibbs in the United states Marines by James E. Wise, Jr. And also Anne Collier Rehill in 1999 that people started to realize the the story of Powell’s death was a little more complicated.

Marines examine out a Japanese tank knocked the end of action.Marines examine out a Japanese tank knocked the end of action.

Wise, a retired us Navy Captain, uncovered that Powell had died not in combat however as the an outcome of a catastrophic accident.

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It seemed that, ~ above the day once fighting ~ above Tinian finally ended, Powell and other Marines do some type of alcoholic beverage come celebrate, possibly including methyl alcohol. One other marine was said to have been hospitalized and temporarily blinded after drink the concoction. Powell died, and his USMC records listed the reason of his death as “acute alcohol poisoning.”

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It is both ironic and tragic that, having survived bloody combat, Powell need to die in this way. Perhaps, had he lived, he might have to be able come resurrect his movie job after the war. Perhaps, once ABC was searching for a brand-new Lone Ranger in 1949, he can even have remained in the structure so we would remember not Clayton Moore yet Lee Powell as the Lone Ranger.