Ronald Sinclair; Child Actor, Film Editor

Ronald Sinclair, who began his acting career as a child and later became a film editor, has died at the Motion Picture & Television Country House. He was 78.

A resident of Saugus, Sinclair died Nov. 22 of respiratory failure, said his wife, Carol Sinclair.

Born Richard Arthur Hould in Dunedin, New Zealand, he appeared as a child in an early sound film, “Down on the Farm,” made in his native country. He came to the United States when he was 12 and, at the urging of studio executives, changed his name to Ronald Sinclair.


Sinclair’s film appearances included “Thoroughbreds Don’t Cry” (1937) with Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney, portraying the young Scrooge in “A Christmas Carol” (1938) and playing a Royal Air Force radioman in “Desperate Journey” (1942).

Sinclair’s interests later turned to film editing and his credits include “Machine-Gun Kelly” (1958), “Tower of London” (1962) and “Thunder Alley” (1967). He later worked on various television shows.

Sinclair was past president of the California branch of the Humane Society of the United States.

In addition to his wife of 31 years, Sinclair is survived by his son, Richard Sinclair of Saugus.

At his request, no services were held. His family plans to scatter his ashes over New Zealand.

Praiswater Funeral Home in Van Nuys handled the arrangements.

Donations can be made in Sinclair’s name to Greenpeace.