Billy Mays, the very likable promoter of the Oxi Clean products was found dead in his home Sunday by his wife. Mays was only 50. Mays was recently featured on a new reality program on the Discovery network called "pitchmen" along with Anthony Sullivan, another big name in infomercials.
Mays was actually a very popular pitchman, with plenty of fans asking for his autograph or to share their good experiences about the Oxi Clean products he promotes. Mays was originally an Atlantic City Boardwalk promoter of some made-for-TV products such as knives, but after touring state fairs and other circuits to sell his goods, the head of Orange Glow was very impressed with Mays and hired him to promote their new line of Oxi Clean products.
Strangely, Mays was on an U.S. Airways flight Saturday that avoided a serious accident when it blew out the front tires. Several passengers had very minor injuries such as head bumps or bruises after the incident.
Mays always had an enthusiastic style and an upbeat personality with great self-confidence in any product he sold, which made him one of the greatest promoters of commercial products that ever lived. Mays was always popular for his thumbs up approach.
Well, here's a big thumbs up to you Billy Mays.
(Note: At one point I was seriously considering making this into a humor post, making wacky comparisons with the tragic Michael Jackson news, wondering what comment the Sham Wow guy would have, or whether CNN would interrupt their regular news for nonstop coverage of this latest celebrity death. But the more I read about the life of Mays, the more I respect the guy. He was a very decent man who was a great minor celebrity. And I opted to respect him instead in this post rather than make jokes. I'm going to miss Billy Mays).
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