Tony Dow who played Wally on “Leave It To Beaver” died Tuesday at 77. Tony’s manager Frank Bilotta said the actor “passed from cancer on Tuesday.” Leave It To Beaver Actor Tony Dow is not dead despite reports he had died.
“This morning Tony’s wife Lauren, who was very distraught, had notified us that Tony had passed and asked that we notify all his fans,” the statement said. “We have since received a call from Tony’s daughter-in-law saying that while Tony is not doing well, he has not yet passed.”
UPDATE: Tony Dow is not dead. Despite an official statement posted by the Leave It to Beaver star’s management, the actor, who is stricken with liver cancer, is still alive. TMZ reports that Dow’s wife Lauren “believed her husband was dead” and told the star’s management he had passed, hence the official statement that media outlets widely circulated. However, TMZ notes that, “he is still alive and breathing while in hospice care.” ABC7 reporter George Pennacchio then spoke to Lauren and clarified exactly how this major miscommunication with the public occurred.
“She (Lauren) is understandably distraught and grief-stricken about what’s been going on with Tony’s health battle these past months,” Pennacchio says. “He’s been in hospice care at their home, and based on some health issues overnight, Lauren inferred that Tony had passed away to some people close to her and the word quickly spread. Lauren admits she’s been ‘a little fuzzy’ these days—understandable.
“She told me she now feels ‘foolish’ about what has transpired since his death has been reported around the world. She also told me, through her pain, ‘it is of my own doing.’ I told her we know it’s been a very stressful time and people understand overwhelming grief. Lauren says she ‘loves and adores’ her husband of 42 years with all of her heart. While she did say he passed, she now understands the miscommunication and is sorry for causing a commotion in this challenging time.”
The original Facebook announcement, which has now been deleted, stated, “It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share with you the passing of our beloved Tony this morning,” the statement read. “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. The world has lost an amazing human being, but we are all richer for the memories that he has left us. From the warm reminiscences of Wally Cleaver to those of us fortunate enough to know him personally – thank you Tony.”
Credit: TMZ, USA Today, Facebook