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Ian Bruce Turpie (1943–2012)

by Melissa Davey

from Sydney Morning Herald

The entertainer and Australian TV veteran Ian ''Turps'' Turpie died yesterday following a diagnosis of throat cancer just over a year ago. He was 68.

Turpie, of Narraweena, became a household name in the 1980s as host of the game show The New Price is Right. He went on to host Press your Luck in 1987 and Supermarket Sweep in 1992, and acted in TV shows including Homicide and Always Greener.

His family said he was ''surrounded by his family and was very peaceful … He adored his family, friends, co-workers and fans over the past 50-plus years. He was so grateful for the many well wishes he received''.

Fellow game show host John Burgess said yesterday although Turpie's death was ''not unexpected'' the news had come as a shock. ''He was a good mate of mine. We've been mates for 40 years,'' Burgess said.

''He was just a good bloke who would do anything for anyone. He was one of the great stars and a great Australian.

''We could well do without losing people of Turp's calibre.''

Larry Emdur, who hosted The Price is Right throughout the 1990s, wrote on Twitter that he had last seen Turpie a few years ago. ''He [Turpie] said people still yell ''come on down!!'' to him every single day & it still made him smile,'' Emdur wrote, referring to the famous catchphrase from the show.

Turpie was born in Melbourne in 1943 and gained recognition as a child actor on radio and in theatre. In 1983 he won a Logie for his TV show Turpie Tonight.

He is survived by his wife of more than 44 years, Jan, three children and three grandchildren.

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Citation details

Melissa Davey, 'Turpie, Ian Bruce (1943–2012)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 18 June 2024.

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