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Route 66 Star Died From Hepatitis

Route 66 is known as an iconic highway in the United States, connecting cities and towns from Illinois to California. It was a popular route for travelers and tourists during the 1930s to 1960s, with numerous diners, motels, attractions, and roadside stops that became symbols of American nostalgia. One of the legends that emerged from Route 66 was Bobby Troup, a musician, actor, and songwriter who composed the famous song “Route 66” and performed it with his band, The Troupers. However, Bobby Troup’s life and career were cut short by a fatal disease that often goes unnoticed – hepatitis.

Bobby Troup was born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in 1918 and grew up in a musical family. He learned to play piano and trumpet at a young age and studied music at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1941, Troup moved to Hollywood, California, to pursue a career in show business, where he landed roles in movies and TV shows and befriended famous celebrities such as Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole.

Troup’s breakthrough as a songwriter came when he wrote “Daddy” for Julie London, whom he married in 1959. The song became a hit and propelled Troup’s popularity as a songwriter and performer. In 1962, Troup recorded “Route 66” with The Troupers, which became an instant classic and was covered by dozens of artists ever since. The song captured the spirit of the open road, the freedom, and the adventure that Route 66 represented for many Americans.

However, Troup’s success was overshadowed by his battle with hepatitis, which he contracted in the early 1960s, possibly through a blood transfusion. Hepatitis is a viral infection that affects the liver and can cause inflammation, scarring, and damage to the organ. It can be transmitted through contaminated blood or body fluids, such as unprotected sex, sharing needles, or exposure to unsanitary conditions.

Troup’s hepatitis worsened over time, affecting his health and his ability to perform. He underwent multiple treatments, including medication and blood transfusions, but his condition deteriorated. On February 7, 1999, Bobby Troup passed away in his home in Sherman Oaks, California, at the age of 80, due to complications from hepatitis.

Troup’s death highlighted the importance of awareness and prevention of hepatitis, which is still a major public health concern worldwide. According to the World Health Organization, hepatitis viruses cause over 1 million deaths per year, and about 290 million people are living with chronic hepatitis B or C infections. Hepatitis can lead to liver cirrhosis, liver cancer, and other severe conditions, and can be prevented through vaccination, safer sex practices, clean needle use, and proper hygiene.

Bobby Troup’s legacy lives on through his music, his contributions to Route 66 culture, and his impact on American pop culture. However, his death also serves as a reminder of the fragility of our health and the importance of taking care of ourselves and getting tested for hepatitis and other diseases. As we drive down Route 66 or any other road, let us remember Bobby Troup and his message of “getting our kicks on Route 66,” but also let us stay aware of the risks and challenges that lie ahead. So, we must be careful about our health and take steps to protect ourselves and others from infectious diseases.