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June 2, 2015

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Former Las Vegas headliner Danny Thomas to appear on postage stamp

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Danny Thomas in Las Vegas

The Rat Pack

A postcard shows the Rat Pack (from left Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford and Joey Bishop) posing in front of a Sands Hotel marquee bearing their names. Their performances at the Sands during the 60s marked the golden age of the group. Launch slideshow »

Danny Thomas and the Rat Pack

Former Las Vegas headliner and founder of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Danny Thomas will grace the cover of a new postage stamp, according to a report from USA Today.

Thomas’ posthumous appearance on the stamp coincides with the hospital’s 50th anniversary. St. Jude’s, based in Memphis, Tenn., treats children regardless of a family’s ability to pay and is considered one of the world’s top pediatric hospitals.

The U.S. Postal Service unveiled the new stamp Saturday in Los Angeles at a St. Jude gala celebrating what would have been Thomas’ 100th birthday, USA Today reports.

Thomas, who rose to stardom in his sitcom “Make Room for Daddy” in the 1950s, died in 1991 of a heart attack at age 79. The Emmy-award winning sitcom was later known as “The Danny Thomas Show.”

During his entertainment career, Thomas made frequent stops in Las Vegas headlining gigs, such as one at the Sands Hotel’s Copa Room shortly after the resort opened in 1952.

Former Miss America Jean Bartel, who died in March, spoke to the Las Vegas Weekly in January about working with Thomas on the Strip.

“I was the opening act for Danny Thomas back in the day," she said. "There was really only one casino there, the Flamingo. And Bugsy Siegel and the gang ran it, and he couldn’t have been nicer to me. After the show, Danny Thomas and I would talk, talk, talk, because we were never sleepy. Then he would go out in the back of the hotel with the orchestra leader and skeet shoot. It was nothing but desert out there.”

The stamp will enter the market Feb. 16 and can be used on a first-class letter. It's a "forever" stamp, meaning that no monetary amount appears on the stamp and it can be used regardless of the current cost of postage.

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