‘The Waltons’: Richard Thomas Crashed His Car the Night He Won an Emmy for Playing John-Boy Walton

Richard Thomas may have played a downstairs character on him The Waltons, but in real life he was not much like John-Boy Walton. For one thing, the New York-born actor did not learn to drive until he was thrown on the CBS Series in the early 20s, when his part demanded that he get behind the wheel of the character’s truck.

Richard Thomas learned to drive on the set of ‘The Waltons’

Richard Thomas as John Boy Walton on 'The Waltons'
Richard Thomas as John Boy Walton him The Waltons| CBS through Getty Images

Thomas may have got his driver’s license, but from the sound of things, he hadn’t fully experienced being behind the wheel. In 1973, the following year The Waltons first, he was nominated for an Emmy for playing John-Boy. As he shared in a 2019 interview with the Television Academy, he did not expect to win.

“Here I am, a young Hollywood star with my first car – and it was a white Volvo station vehicle,” Thomas recalled. “I wasn’t just on the fast track. But I was driving and thinking, ‘You might win this thing. You’re not going to attack, but you probably are. If so, what the hell are you going to say? ‘I had no idea. ”

“So I started thinking about it, and – bam – I got into the car in front of me. I didn’t put my car up too badly, but bad enough. I moved home, and forgot to think about what I was going to say. Then I sit in the theater, and they called me. I went up and I was like, ‘I damaged my car.’ ”

Richard Thomas won the Emmy

In a video of Thomas’ Emmy winning, the panic actor is seen running to the stage to accept his award. He begins his acceptance speech by telling everyone about his accident.

“Well, I should tell you now, on the way to changing into this suit, coming down suddenly, it happened to me suddenly if I should come up here to say something tonight, I would have nothing to say. So I started thinking about saying something, and I destroyed my car, ”he says, with an audience smile.

Despite his lack of preparation, Thomas received a short talk on pulling the fly together.

“Anyway, it’s a big surprise to me and I’m very grateful to the Academy,” he said. “And I would like to thank everyone and I would like to thank my two families, the Waltons and the Thomases. Thank you very much. ”

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