Remembering Dan Selakovich

Dan Selakovich will be missed by friends and neighbors on Larchmont (Photo courtesy of Anna Casey)

Neighbors on Larchmont Blvd. were stunned last week to learn of the death of Dan Selakovich, a twenty-year resident at the charming, classic brick building at 564 N. Larchmont Blvd.

According to his sister, Betty Casey, Selakovich suffered from depression and took his life last Tuesday. Casey, editor of the blog TulsaKids, wrote about her brother’s battle with mental illness. She will be in the neighborhood this evening at a memorial for her brother at his apartment. Friends are welcome to stop by, share stories about him and sign a book for the family.

Originally from Oklahoma, Selakovich came to Los Angeles to study at Cal Arts. According to his IMDb profile, “Selakovich spent most of his career uncredited, re-editing and sometimes directing additional scenes in troubled movies to make them a little less bad.”

“Dan was a talented editor,” said his friend and down-the-hall neighbor of 20 plus years, Duke Underwood.  “Dan was quite good, he wrote some scripts, he devoted a great deal of time to working on making a short film, though I’m not sure it was ever fully finished. But he wrote an incredible book for do-it-yourselfers, on how to make your own dollies, which sold quite well.” said Underwood. “I invited him to teach a seminar to my students at USC, and they really loved him because he was so committed and passionate about showing them how to make something yourself instead of renting all the equipment.”

The book “Killer Camera Rigs That You Can Build”, which shows filmmakers how to build their own dollies, cranes, stabilizers, car mounts, etc., was published in 2003.

“Dan was well known and well loved on Larchmont where he lived with his sweet dog Silvie in the brick apartment building a few doors down from my office,” said Patti Carroll, Hollywoodland Realty, who shared the news with the Buzz.  “I have known him probably since my dad died, in 2003, and had no idea any of this was going on in his life.  Carl, our mailman, was in tears when he told me.”

Another neighbor, Rachel Olivier, a writer at the Larchmont Chronicle, told the Buzz that Selakovich was in the building when she moved in in 1997. She noted that Selakovich was very private in his struggle, but he was a wonderful neighbor, loved by his devoted family…and the whole building was stunned when they learned of his death.

Everyone also told the Buzz about Selakovich’s wonderful rescue dogs, Monk, who has since passed away, and now Silvie, who survives Selakovich. Olivier and Underwood shared this charming video Selakovich made with Monk, which he posted on Facebook in 2009.

Angel Dog

This is a 1 1/2 minute short I made years ago featuring my late dog, Monk. Hope you like it!

Posted by Dan Selakovich on Tuesday, December 22, 2009

 

Selakovich’s niece Anna provided the Buzz with the following information on the memorial planned for this evening:

Gathering of friends to remember Dan Selakovich
Tuesday, Jan. 23 at 6 p.m.
Back patio of Dan’s apartment building on Larchmont (564 Larchmont Blvd.)
Guests are welcome to bring drinks, food, photos and fond memories to share.
In her article, Betty Casey also offered the following: “If you feel suicidal, call someone – a friend or family member who will listen to you. Or put the number for the suicide hotline in your phone: 1-800-273-8255 or go to https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org.”
Dan Selakovich’s obituary was published in today’s Los Angeles Times.
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About Patricia Lombard

Patricia Lombard is the co-editor and publisher of the Larchmont Buzz. Patty lives with her family in Fremont Place. She has been active in neighborhood issues since moving here in 1989. Her pictorial history, "Larchmont" for Arcadia Press is available at Chevalier's Books.

6 thoughts on “Remembering Dan Selakovich

  1. This is unbearably sad. I loved seeing Dan on Larchmont over the years, with either Monk or Sylvie, because he was always so kind and pleasant to me. He lifted my spirits every time we stopped to chat, which is horribly ironic given the nature of his death. I don’t think Dan even knew my name, but that didn’t matter – he always treated me like a friend. Go with God now, dear friend, and rest in peace.

  2. I am so sad to hear this. While I did not know Dan personally, he was a familiar face in our neighborhood. Thank you for sharing a bit of his life with us. My heartfelt sympathies to his family —

  3. His sister Betty’s piece in Tulsa Kids (link above) is a remarkable and very sad statement about the mental health care in our community. Let’s change that. And Betty, I am so sorry for the loss of your lovely, funny, hurting brother.

  4. So sorry to hear about Dan’s struggle with mental health issue and ultimate loss to them. Sylvie and Dan were one of our very first dog friends in the neighborhood when I moved here. My dog, Paul Rudd, loved Dan so much, he would cry with excitement and pull me down the street anytime we would see him with Sylvie. Dan was a lovely sweet and caring man. Rest In Peace.

  5. Thank you all for your kind comments. My brother was a truly lovely and unique person. I miss him so much. When you walk around Larchmont, please remember him and send out happy thoughts. He loved the neighborhood, and you were all part of that.

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