Merrillville, Ind. When mourners began singing "Oh, I wish I were an Oscar Mayer wiener" during George Molchan's funeral, they meant no disrespect.
Molchan, who died Tuesday at 82, portrayed the meat processor's spokesman, Little Oscar, for more than three decades, traveling from town to town in the company's Wienermobile to appear in parades and supermarkets promoting the company's hot dogs.
The 27-foot-long Oscar Mayer Wienermobile was parked Saturday near Molchan's grave at a cemetery in Merrillville.
"Wizard of Oz" munchkin actor Meinhardt Raabe convinced Molchan to try out for the role of Little Oscar, according to Molchan's brother, Elmer.
The character was created in the 1930s by company founder Oscar Mayer to help market its products. Molchan played Little Oscar for 36 years.