Irene Ryan (The Beverly Hillbillies)

October 17, 1902 – April 26, 1973

How do you like yer possum, Lowell, fallin’ off the bones tender or with a little fight left in it?

 

Irene Ryan
Irene Ryan

 

Irene Ryan played Granny. Perfectly. When I was growing up, I thought her character was really annoying, but as I got older, I found her to be the best thing in the show. Those that knew her, called her Reenie.

In 1973, she was living on Esparta Way, in Santa Monica.

 

 

Her address was 107.

 

 

It’s a tricky one to find. Ask Steve Goldstein, who (again, thank you) took the pictures.  Here’s a better view of the house.

 

 

Findadeath.com friend J. Mueller writes in: “Her husband was a respected Hollywood comedy writer and former vaudevillian named Tim Ryan. Good guy, from all accounts. His main claim to fame: He wrote the scripts for a dozen or so of the Bowery Boys movies with Leo and Huntz.” Thanks for the info!

Irene was appearing in Pippin, with Ben Vereen and a few others. She suffered a stroke while performing in a Saturday matinee. A few weeks later, on April 26th, she died of some sort of tumor, and hardening of the arteries, in St. John’s Hospital, in Santa Monica.

 

 

 

Findadeath.com friend Mitch writes in: it was a brain tumor. According to the death cert, glioblastoma is the fastest growing type.

She was 70 years old.

Her funeral was held on May 1st, and pallbearers were Max Baer, Kingsley Colton, Buddy Ebsen, Ralph Handley, Paul Henning and Edward Sherman. Honorary pallbearers were Bob Hope (ugh.), Bob Fosse, Al Simon and Ben Vereen.

Irene is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery, in Santa Monica, CA. I love the fact that the name GRANNY is on her tomb.

 

 

UPDATE December 2004, from Findadeath friend Fred: You might want to mention in your notes on Irene Ryan that she left her estate to establish a scholarship fund for student actors. In fact when I was in grad school, I auditioned for one of the “Irene Ryan Scholarships” (didn’t get it though). As I remember the estate was several millions of dollars, and as far as I know is still around today. Thanks, Fred!

 

View her grave.

 

Irene Ryan's Death Certificate

 

 

2 thoughts on “Irene Ryan (The Beverly Hillbillies)

  • October 9, 2020 at 6:54 am
    Permalink

    Granny I watched all your movies The Beverly Hillbillies..

    Reply
  • August 21, 2020 at 4:21 pm
    Permalink

    ms. ryan loved that she could go out in public and not be terribly hounded, due to her make up etc as granny i would guess many didn’t know her until she spoke

    she’s on the sdtk lp of “pippin” where she sang a great song called “no time at all” recorded and released by MOTOWN)!!( THE SINGLE OF THIS SONG MADE THE CHARTS SHE ALSO RECORDED A ONE OFF SINGLE CALLED “GRANNY’S MINI SKIRT COMPLETE WITH A PICTURE SLEEVE- very rare and hard to find! SHE WAS A GREAT ACTRESS WHO FINALLY “MADE IT”. WHEN MAX BAER WANTED GO GO AS A GROUP TO GET MORE MONEY SHE BALKED AT BEING INVOLVED

    SORRY FOR THE CAPS I WROTE THIS FORGETTING I HAD ENGAGED THEM! THANKS SCOTT FOR EVERYTHING YOU DO FOR ALL OF US 🙂

    Reply

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