This week, fans of 50s and 70s television lost two beloved character. On Saturday, Barbara Billingsley who played June Cleaver on Leave it to Beaver passed away. Throughout the 1950s Ward and June were the parents of Wally and Theodore “Beaver” Cleaver. It is almost inconceivable in today’s world to have a mother who wore a pretty dress and apron all day long and would have a plate of cookies and a pitcher of milk waiting for you when you got home from school. It seems that some of the biggest problems she had to deal with was the Beaver’s refusal to eat Brussel Sprouts. Of course, there was the time when Beaver and his pal Larry Mondello were stuck in the giant coffee cup on the billboard. Not to mention enduring the frequent visits by one Eddie Haskell and his “My that’s a very lovely dress you are wearing, Mrs. Cleaver.” Not only did she later reprise the role of one of tv land’s favorite mothers, Ms. Billingsley also was the voice of “Nanny” on the animated Muppet Babies series.
Tuesday, Tom Bosley who played hardware owner/father for eleven years on Happy Days lost his life. Week in and week out, Howard Cunningham leant and ear and sage advice to Richie and Joanie. Not so much to Chuck… who wasn’t around long enough but maybe to bounce a basketball during the first handful of episodes. Long after Fonzie “jumped the shark” on skis in his trademark leather jacket, Howard and Marion watched their children grow, move out, and (in their daughter’s case) move back in. Years after the series ended, Mr. Bosley originated the role of another father, Maurice (Belle’s father) in the Original Broadway Cast of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.
AH… simpler times with simple problems. Rest in peace June and Mr C.
2 thoughts on “Farewell To A Couple Of TV Parents”
And wonderful people they each were, I’ve heard.
I’ve never seen an episode of either show (though I always thought I watched a lot of classic sit-coms, interesting), though I have seen Tom Bosley in other things. But the shows are so well publicized in pop culture that I know a lot about them – and now I know even more. 🙂
I watched Happy Days at the time, but not so much Beaver reruns. I did see the short-lived sequel (“Still the Beaver”) run though, as well as the movie remake some time ago.
God be with their families in this time of grief.