Gene Patton, ‘The Gong Show’s Gene Gene Dancing Machine, Dies At 82
Gene Gene Dancing Machine from The Gong Show, Gene Patton, died Monday in Pasadena. He was 82.
Gene Patton Dies
Patton’s family announced his death Friday. A spokeswoman at the local Woods-Valentine Mortuary confirmed his passing, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Patton had long suffered from diabetes, losing both of his legs to the disease in 2001.
During The Gong Show’s run from 1976-78, Patton would shuffle out from backstage to the tune of count Basie’s “Jumpin’ at the Woodside.” When Gene Gene Dancing Machine busted a move, host Chuck Barris, the talent competition judges and the audience all followed suit. Patton’s boogie was incorporated into the show when he was spotted dancing while working as a stagehand during rehearsal.
“One day, during rehearsal, I saw Gene dancing by himself in a dark corner. The huge stagehand never moved his feet; just his body from the waist up. He was terrific,” Barris wrote in his 1984 memoir, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.
Patton went on to reprise his moves in The Gong Show Movie and in George Clooney‘s feature film Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.
Patton was predeceased by his wife Doris. He is survived by his sister Henrietta, children Bonnie, Carol, Sidney and Courtney, nine grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.