Brian was born Robert
Alba Keith on Nov. 14, 1921 in Bayonne, New Jersey to actors Robert Keith and Helena Shipman.
Both worked and toured with the John Golden Theatre
They divorced and his father went to Hollywood and started his television
and movie career. Helena continued to do stage and radio and her
mother and grandmother Apker helped to raise Brian on Long Island
and she taught Brian to read and at a very early age he was reading
books way beyond his age level.
One of Brian's recollection of his parents on
stage was the many hours that he spent back stage "being quiet"
and reading for hours, and Helena told me that Brian was such a
good baby because she would put him in the dressing room in one
of her dresser draws and he was quiet and quite cozy and would sleep
through the whole show.