Leave It To Beaver star Tony Dow is reportedly still alive after a premature news of his death was posted on his Facebook page.
According to TMZ, Tony’s wife reportedly confirmed to his manager that he had passed away, but that is not the case.
He is currently in Hospice care and “in his final days” according to his son, but still alive.
Earlier today, Dow’s managers, Frank Bilotta and Renee James, shared in a statement confirming the false news of his death:
“It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share with you the passing of our beloved Tony this morning. Tony was a beautiful soul – kind, compassionate, funny and humble. It was truly a joy to just be around him.
His gentle voice and unpretentious manner was immediately comforting and you could not help but love him.”
Although no cause of death was revealed, he announced back in May that he had cancer.
Dow was thrust into the spotlight at an early age, starring as Wally Cleaver, the brother of Beaver Cleaver, in Leave It To Beaver, the hit sitcom that ran from 1957 to 1963.
Dow recalled in an interview with CBS Sunday Morningback in January how he learned he got the role of Wally Cleaver while eating a hamburger and malt:
“There went my life… it’s sad to be famous at 12 years old or something, and then you grow up and become a real person, and nothing’s happened for you.”
Dow was always open about his mental health challenges, which he said he suffered between the ages of 20 to 40.
In 1993, he was an honorary speaker at the National Depressive and Manic-Depressive Association convention.
He spoke about his struggles in an interview with the Baltimore Sunin 1993:
“I realize there’s a perceived irony about this.
You know, the fact that I was in a TV program that epitomized the supposed ideal world of the ’50s, and here I’m suffering from depression.
But I’m just one of millions.”
He was able to help his mental health struggles through sculpting ornate pieces at his home studio.
Although his role on Leave It To Beaver was his most popular by far, he also had roles later on in life, playing in The New Leave It To Beaver back in the ’80s, and directed episodes of TV series like Harry and the Hendersons, Coach, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.