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Johnny Ringo "... for all those, who take the sword, will perish by the sword."
(Jesus Christ - Matthew 26:52)
A. Ringo - The Hit Song

The "number one" television series of the 1964-65 season was Bonanza, and during that time the patriarch of the Cartwright clan, actor Lorne Greene, experienced being "number one" on another chart - the Billboard Hot 100. He did it with Ringo, not a song about the Beatle but a spoken-word recording about a sheriff who saved the life of gunman Johnny Ringo. - Billboard's Hottest Hot 100 Hits, Fred Bronson; Billboard Books, 1995

Lorne Greene Ringo CD Ringo
1. They lie in boothills all through the west
The outlaws, the gunslingers, the Billy-the-Kids and worse
Say a fellow like the coward that shot Bill Hickock in the back
There's always one like that in every time of history
Most of them were varmints
But every once in awhile in one of them
There may have lived a man

2. He lay face down in the desert sand
Clutching his six-gun in his hand
Shot from behind, I thought he was dead
For under his heart was an ounce of lead
But a spark still burned, so I used my knife
And late that night I saved the life of Ringo

3. I nursed him till the danger passed
The days went by, he mended fast
And then from dawn till setting sun
He practiced with that deadly gun
And hour on hour I watched in awe
No human being could match the draw of Ringo

4. One day we rode the mountain crest
And I went east and he went west
I took to law and wore a star
While he spread terror near and far
With lead and blood he gained such fame
All through the west they feared the name of Ringo

5. I knew someday I'd face the test
Which one of us would be the best
And sure enough the word came down
That he was holed-up in the town
I left the posse out in the street
And I went in alone to meet Ringo

6. They said my speed was next to none
But my lightning draw had just begun
When I heard a blast that stung my wrist
The gun went flying from my fist
And I was looking down the bore
Of the deadly 44 of Ringo

7. They say that was the only time
That anyone had seen him smile
He slowly lowered his gun and then
He said to me, "we're even friend,"
And so at last I understood
That there was still a spark of good in Ringo

8. I blocked the path of his retreat
He turned and stepped into the street
A dozen guns spit fire and lead
A moment later he lay dead
The town began to shout and cheer
No where was there shed a tear for Ringo

9. The story spread throughout the land
That I had beaten Ringo's hand
And it was just the years they say
That made me put my guns away
But on his grave they can't explain
The tarnished star above the name of Ringo

- written by Don Robertson and Hal Blair; ASCAP

Ringo first entered the Top 40 charts on November 7, 1964, and stayed for 10 weeks. The song reached the no.1 position, which it held for one week. Ringo was rated the 28th biggest hit in 1964, one lower position than Barbara Streisand's, People. Other artists in the Top 100 that year included The Beatles, Louis Armstrong, Roy Orbison, The Beach Boys, The Four Seasons, Bobby Vinton, Dean Martin, and The Supremes.

B. Johnny Ringo - The Television Series
FIRST TELECAST: October 1; 1959
LAST TELECAST: September 29, 1960
BROADCAST HISTORY: Oct 1959-Sep 1960, CBS Thu 8:30-9:00
Johnny Ringo
Laura Thomas
Case Thomas
Don Durant
Karen Sharpe
Mark Goddard
Terence de Marney
Johnny Ringo was a gunfighter-turned-lawman. Folks around Velardi, Arizona, apparently didn't mind their sheriff's past, and in fact one of them--pretty young Laura—thought he was a right handsome hunk of man. Case Thomas, Laura's father, was an old drunk who also happened to own the general store. Helping Johnny protect the people of Velardi, and filling in for him when he was busy fending off Laura, was the young deputy, Cully.

There really was a gunfighter-turned-lawman named Johnny Ringo in the 1880s, though it is doubtful that his exploits resembled those portrayed in this series. ("The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network TV Shows" - Tim Brooks & Earle Marsh)