back to top

Dick Assman Has Died


Posted on

A famous Canadian named Dick Assman died this week. He was famous for being named Dick Assman.


Born in 1934, Richard Arthur Assman worked as a mechanic, gas station attendant, and gas station manager in Regina, Saskatchewan, his entire working life.

However, he attained a weird kind of notoriety in 1995 when a newspaper ad announcing a move to another gas station caught the attention of The Late Show With David Letterman.

Letterman featured the ad on his show, poking fun at the unusual name and even getting Assman on the phone.

View this video on YouTube

Assman, then in his sixties, became an unlikely celebrity as Letterman's recurring gags spread "Assmania" far and wide.

I visited Dick Assman's Regina gas station during the height of Assmania in 1996. RIP Dick.

Assman, who was soon a household name in Canada, was featured in People magazine and even recorded a single, according to a 1995 CBC feature about his fame.

Naturally, the soft-spoken gas station attendant also showed up as a guest of honour on Letterman's show once, where he soaked up the attention with good humour.

For the record: Assman always pronounced his own name as "OSS-man."

"A lot of people sure got to know me," he told CBC News last year as Letterman was retiring from The Late Show. "No matter where you go, everybody just knows you."

Michael Bell / The Canadian Press

According to his obituary, Assman died peacefully on Aug. 15.

He was 82 years old.

Ishmael N. Daro is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto. PGP fingerprint: 5A1D 9099 3497 DA4B

Contact Ishmael N. Daro at

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.