The war veteran and disc jockey who was portrayed by Robin Williams in “Good Morning, Vietnam,” Adrian Joseph Cronauer, died Wednesday at age 79, according to media reports.
An obituary published online notes that the former U.S. Air Force sergeant co-authored the original story that became the hit 1987 movie, which was set in Saigon in 1965. Williams received an Academy Award nomination for what is considered to be a loose portrayal of Cronauer in the film.
“Mr. Cronauer served as a confidential advisor to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (DASD) from 2001 through 2009,” his obituary says. “He represented the POW/MIA Office at meetings within the Office of the Secretary of Defense and at various outside functions including liaison with the leadership of veterans service organizations as well as family and activist groups. He had lead responsibility for DPMO’s dealings with international organizations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Tripartite Commission. For his efforts, he holds the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service.”
Cronauer lived in Troutville, Va.
Here’s a clip featuring a radio appearance by Cronauer, which includes Cronauer’s demonstration of how he really did the “Good Morning, Vietnam” radio greeting back in Saigon — starting around the five-minute mark …