Meinhardt Raabe (born September 2, 1915 - April 09, 2010) has crossed over the Shifting Sands to take his rightful place in the Land of Oz.
Formerly the oldest surviving Munchkin-actor from The Wizard of Oz, he was also the only surviving cast member with any significant dialogue in the film.
Raabe was born in Jefferson County, Wisconsin, resided at Penney Retirement Community, Penney Farms, Florida and passed away peacefully on the morning of Friday, April 09, 2010.
Raabe graduated from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1937.
He was the coroner in The Wizard of Oz in 1939, with his only lines being:
As coroner, I must aver
I thoroughly examined her
And she's not only merely dead
She's really, most sincerely dead!
These lines, like most of those delivered by the Munchkins, were dubbed over with the speeded-up voices of other performers. In addition to his role in the film, Raabe worked for many decades as a spokesman for Oscar Mayer, where he was known as "Little Oscar, World's Smallest Chef".
He traveled in the first Wienermobile, produced in 1936.
We are saddened at his passing but grateful for his work as Coroner of Munchkin City and his long and wonderful career following the MGM movie.
Long before there was CSI: (Whatever city you like), there was the Coroner of Munchkin City. His forensic work to determine the cause of the death of the Wicked Witch of the East is the stuff of legends.
James C. Wallace II
Royal Liaison to Princess Ozma