Singer and actress Meredith MacRae was a popular fixture in film and on television throughout the 1960s on programs like “My Three Sons” and “Petticoat Junction.” We remember MacRae’s life today as well as the lives of other notable people who died this day in history.
Singer and actress Meredith MacRae was a popular fixture in film and on television throughout the 1960s on programs like “My Three Sons” and “Petticoat Junction.” She also starred in “Bikini Beach,” from American International Pictures’ beloved “Beach Party” film series. She made appearances on shows like “The Rockford Files,” “Magnum, P.I.,” “The Dean Martin Show,” and many others, as well as celebrity game shows like “Hollywood Squares” and “Family Feud.” Off screen, she raised money for the Children’s Burn Foundation, American Cancer Society, and United Cerebral Palsy. We remember MacRae’s life today as well as the lives of other notable people who died this day in history.
2013: Dennis Burkley, U.S. character actor known for his regular roles on the television series “Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman” and “Sanford,” dies of a heart attack at 67.
2012: Don Brinkley, U.S. television writer, producer, and director who wrote for “The Fugitive,” “Medical Center,” and “Trapper John, M.D.,” and was the father of supermodel Christie Brinkley, dies at 91.
2000: Meredith MacRae, U.S. actress known best for her roles as Sally Ann on “My Three Sons” and as Billie Jo on “Petticoat Junction,” dies of complications from brain cancer at 56.
MacRae’s big break as an actress came in 1963 when she joined the cast of the wildly popular “My Three Sons” as Sally Douglas. She left the show in 1965 and was quickly signed on to replace Gunilla Hutton as Billie Jo Bradley on “Petticoat Junction.” MacRae was the third and final actress to play the role. Her interpretation of Billie Jo added strength and depth to the character, which resonated well with fans, as did her singing voice. Read more
1998: Richard McDonald, U.S. entrepreneur who started the first McDonald’s fast food restaurant in San Bernardino, California, with his brother Maurice and then franchised the concept with their partner, Ray Kroc, dies at 89.
1984: Philippe Wynne, U.S. singer who was a member of the Spinners and later Parliament-Funkadelic, dies of a heart attack at 43.
1984: Ernest Tidyman, U.S. author and screenwriter who wrote the movies “Shaft” and “The French Connection,” dies of a perforated ulcer at 56.
1984: Kenny Delmar, U.S. actor who was popular on many radio series and played multiple roles on the infamous radio drama “The War of the Worlds,” dies at 73.
1975: Zutty Singleton, U.S. jazz drummer who was a member of Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five and later played with Fats Waller and Jelly Roll Morton, dies at 77.
1973: Clarence White, U.S. guitarist and singer who was a member of the Byrds and was also a session musician on albums by the Everly Brothers, Ricky Nelson, and the Monkees, dies at 29 when he’s struck by a drunken driver while loading music equipment into his vehicle after a gig.
1970: Preston Foster, U.S. actor whose movie appearances included “Annie Oakley” and “My Friend Flicka,” dies at 69.
1954: Jackie Saunders, U.S. actress who was a star for Balboa Films during the silent era, dies at 61.
1881: Billy the Kid, U.S. outlaw in the Old West shot by Sheriff Pat Garrett, dies at 21.