Last time I visited Frank Liberman, at the Motion Picture Country Home a few months ago, he did not recognize me or, at least, did not seem to.
I had known Frank for about 40 years through his many years at Warner Bros., and during the decades when he was the chief personal publicist for Bob Hope, who also maintained several other publicists on his staff to do who-knows-what.
Frank’s wife, Pat Harris, died about 25 years ago. She also worked in the industry and his sister-in-law, Radie Harris, was the Hollywood columnist for a New York City publication. We all gave her royal treatment during her California visits.
No one would accuse Frank of not saying exactly what he thought. You got his true — sometimes ascerbic — observations whether you liked them or not . When I told him in 1962 that I had resigned from the 20th-Fox publicity department to start my own agency, he replied, "Why the hell are you doing that? Aren’t there enough independent publicists trying to get business? We don’t need you competing!"
Frank was as happy living at the Motion Picture Country Home as any retired widower could be, and so had been such associates of my as cinematographer Leon Shamroy and publicists Jet Fore and Henry Ehrlich.
Frank was strong, smart, witty, a dependable friend and a memorable personality. Frank was the right name for him.
He disseminated only the truth. In a world of double talk we sure could use him today.