From 1957 to ’63, she was the ideal suburban housewife and mother. Now, a family spokeswoman says Barbara Billingsley died this weekend at her home in Santa Monica, CA. We knew Ms. Billingsley as June Cleaver, wife of Ward and mother to Wally and the irrepressible Beaver.
We’ve always wondered what our real life mothers thought of June Cleaver. After a day of toiling over washing, ironing, scrubbing floors, cooking and child rearing, you just know they had to be annoyed to turn on the T.V. to see June flit around her perfect house in high heels and pearls. And while our mothers struggled to deal with our latest fracas, June was never at a loss to help Wally and the “Beav” out of their jams – even when it involved an alligator in the basement.
Many years later, Ms. Billingsley showed she could have a little fun with her iconic image when she did a cameo role in the 1980 movie, “Airplane.” Who can forget this hilarious scene:
Rest in peace, Barbara Billingsley. June Cleaver will always be with us – at least as long as TV Land keeps running old episodes of “Leave it to Beaver.”