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Old 06-18-2016, 11:20 AM
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Whatever happend to Herbert O'Dell Smith aka 'Digger O'Delll'?

For decades he did publicity stunts being buried alive. Here's an article from 1979, one of the last easily searchable public records of him. In the unlikely event he's still alive, he'd be about 100.
Old 06-18-2016, 11:27 AM
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This article dated July 21, 2015 attempts to answer the same question:

Quote:
I can’t say what finally happened to Digger. Searching for Herbert O’Dell Smith took me nowhere, and you’d be surprised how many people in America are named “Digger O’Dell.” Why, there’s Edwin “Digger” Odell of Abilene, Texas; Allen “Digger” O’Dell of Malvern, Iowa; Charles Wayne “Digger” O’Dell of Lebanon, Tennessee; Loren “Digger” O’Dell of Brookfield, Missouri — you get the picture. For that matter, a popular plant nursery just outside of town on Highway 64 is called Digger O’Dell’s, but that’s yet another Digger (real name: Dennis). It seems “Digger O’Dell” was a “friendly undertaker” character in The Life of Riley, a radio soap opera that aired back in the 1930s, but that still doesn’t explain the curious popularity of the name, if you ask me.

http://memphismagazine.com/culture/arts/digger-odell/
Old 06-18-2016, 07:37 PM
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Maybe they forgot where they buried him.
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Old 06-19-2016, 12:58 AM
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tracked him down to a tomato patch in Cumming, Ga.. in 1979.

http://nytimes.com/1979/06/03/ar...e-up.html?_r=0
Old 06-19-2016, 01:20 AM
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http://findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg...834607&df=all&

I am told Herbert "Digger" Smiths official middle name is Odell, and he was 63 in 79... so born circa 1913
Old 06-19-2016, 08:55 PM
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I can enlighten you. I'm watching the Cavs beat golden State, but will post at halftime.
Old 06-20-2016, 08:20 AM
ftg ftg is offline
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Originally Posted by samclem View Post
I can enlighten you. I'm watching the Cavs beat golden State, but will post at halftime.
This is one long halftime.
Old 06-20-2016, 08:52 AM
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I used to know a guy named Bob "Digger" O'Dell. He was a little odd, but I don't think he went around getting himself buried. I had no idea why he wanted to be called Digger until my Dad told me about the Friendly Undertaker radio character. I wasn't familiar with the publicity stunt guy, though. I wonder which one my friend took his name from.
Old 06-20-2016, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by ftg View Post
This is one long halftime.
Yeah. And then I had to watch last half, then all the hoopla after the game and then--I was tired.

So, here goes.

Herbert O'Dell Smith was a pretty interesting guy. Not only getting buried and then dug up, he was first a flagpole sitter.

I have access to Ancestry at home(I subscribe) and I pay for access at home to 4 historic newspaper databases.

He was born June 10, 1915 to William E. and Mary Alice Smith. He died 23 May 1999 in Dawsonville/Atlanta GA. Buried in Cumming, GA.

More in a bit.
Old 06-21-2016, 07:57 AM
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In prisons in Georgia between 35-1941. Army paratrooper 1942-1944. Ran out on his wife and four kids in 1949. Brought back to Atlanta on warrants in 1950. Abandoned them again 1961. Brought back on warrants. Was mainly being buried 1960-1979. Buried for the last time in 1999. Never dug up from that one.
Old 06-23-2016, 11:35 AM
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Thanks, all!
Old 06-23-2016, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Claverhouse View Post
Maybe they forgot where they buried him.
Damn! Knew I forgot something!
(Runs out of house with shovel in hand)
Old 06-23-2016, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by samclem View Post
He was born June 10, 1915 to William E. and Mary Alice Smith. He died 23 May 1999 in Dawsonville/Atlanta GA. Buried in Cumming, GA.
The grave.
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