Lee, Eugene Gordon ‘Porky'
Eugene Gordon Lee (October 25, 1933 – October 16, 2005) was an American child actor, most notable for appearing in the Our Gang (Little Rascals) comedies as Porky from 1935 to 1939. During his tenure in Our Gang, Porky originated the catchphrase "O-tay!", though it is commonly attributed to Buckwheat. Inscribed Photograph Signed, n.d. - 8 x 10 B/W written in heavy blk felt pen in the hand of the author upper left cornor. Overall, fine/very fine condition.
Lee was born in Fort Worth, Texas as Eugene Lee, and was adopted.
Lee got his break in motion pictures in 1935, after producer Hal Roach noted how much the eighteen-month-old toddler looked like Our Gang star Spanky McFarland, also from Texas. The Lee family traveled from Texas to Culver City, California, and Eugene Lee, nicknamed "Porky" by the studio, joined the cast as Spanky's little brother. Porky appeared in forty-two Our Gang comedies over four years.
Lee, McFarland, and Our Gang co-stars Carl “Alfalfa” Switzer, Billie "Buckwheat" Thomas, and Darla Hood constituted what is today the most familiar incarnation of Our Gang.
After leaving the series, Lee retired from motion pictures, and entered public school. As an adult, he became an alternative school educator at Broomfield High School in Colorado. Lee changed his name and began going by Gordon Lee (naming himself after his favorite Our Gang director, Gordon Douglas) to avoid any correlation with his former acting career.
After retiring, Lee moved to Minnesota to be closer to his son Douglas.
In the early 1980s, Lee began appearing at Little Rascals reunions and began a business selling "Porky"-related merchandise. Finally embracing his past, Lee was known to tell Our Gang fans “we are relics of history.”
On October 16, 2005 after battling lung cancer and brain cancer, he died at the age of 71, nine days before his 72nd birthday.