Barbara Billingsley, the wife of Hugh Beaumont, was given the perfect caption by her son on television Tony Dow: “America’s Mom.” The epitaph “America’s Mom” was then used by “NBC Nightly News” as the title to the segment about Billingsley’s death today at the age of 94.
Billingsley played June Cleaver on “Leave It to Beaver,” and won viewers by her talent after it. The show ran through 1957 to 1963 on CBS, and later moved to ABC.
Billingsley portrayed June on the show who was the resolute wife of Ward, played by real-life husband Hugh Beaumont. June was a stay-at-home mom of children Wally, played by Tony Dow, and Theodore, played by Jerry Mathers, and was called “the Beaver” on the show.
Billingsley’s husband, Hugh Beaumont died in 1982.
Billingsley’s trademark was wearing pearls, which depicted her on-screen character too – June was a true pearl. She played the role in a manner of style, composure, and classiness which can never be forgotten.
Dow told CNN about working with the TV screen legend. He said that the late wife of Hugh Beaumont spoke about her role being the ‘best thing to have ever happened to her’ and that Billingsley relished being popular for it. She would always consider it a huge honor.
Later in 1980, she reenacted her role as June in the TV movie “Still the Beaver.” She appeared again in two series “Still the Beaver” on Disney Channel and “The New Leave It to Beaver” on WTBS after is.
The late wife of Hugh Beaumont, Barbara Billingsley starred as Jun on other series as well, including “Roseanne.” She appeared as a guest star on other series, such as “Murphy Brown,” “Empty Nest,” “The FBI,” “Morky & Mindy” and “The Love Boat.” She also made a hilarious cameo in the 1980 movie “Airplane!” as she played a passenger who spoke jive which was truly unforgettable.
The title of “America’s Mom” has been acclaimed by her rightfully.