You may not know the name Irene Ryan.

Irene was a vaudeville, radio, film and Broadway star.  She could act, sing, dance, tell jokes....these days we would call her a 'multi-tasker' I guess.  She could pretty much do it all, as you can see in this video clip from 1944 performing 'Happiest Girl In Town'.



But of course, for millions (and millions) of us, Irene Ryan is and will forever be...Granny.

Irene Ryan was cast as 'Granny' Daisy Moses in 'The Beverly Hillbillies' in 1962,  and for the rest of the decade we welcomed Granny, Jed, Ellie May, Jethro, Jane Hathaway, Mr. Drysdale and the rest into our living rooms.

The Hilllbillies were a hit across the country, but probably not more than in out living room in our little farmhouse in southwest Minnesota.  If my Dad and Mom were still here and I asked them to list their Top 3 television shows of all time, well, 'The Beverly Hillbillies' would certainly be in there. (The other two might well be 'Hee Haw' and one of the great classic westerns!).

Now, if you want to talk about gun control, well, that's something Granny did way back on the show!  Take a look, and smile...and remember.



So whatever happened to Granny?  I mean, whatever happened to Irene Ryan?

Well, unfortunately Irene passed away not all that long after the show ended in 1971.  She died from complications of a stroke in 1973 at the too young age of 70.  But the good news is, we can watch this multi-talented entertainer on 'The Beverly Hillbillies' into the unseen future thanks to re-runs!

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