She is best known for her role as Mrs. Partridge on the 1970s television show The Partridge Family
Actress Shirley Jones turns 86 today
Actress Shirley Jones was born on March 31, 1934, in Charleroi, Pennsylvania. She was the only child born to Marjorie and Paul Jones, a beer manufacturer. At an early age, Marjorie Jones recognized that her daughter had a natural gift for singing. Jones went on to study drama at the Pittsburgh Playhouse, after which she performed with the Civic Light Opera Company. Jones starred in the film adaptations of several musicals in the 1950s and ’60s, including ‘Oklahoma!’ and ‘The Music Man.’ She won an Academy Award for her role in the 1960 film ‘Elmer Gantry.’ But Jones is best known for playing Shirley Partridge on the hit show ‘The Partridge Family,’ co-starring with her real live stepson David Cassidy. She was cast as the recently widowed mother of a singing family. The show was a hit, making household names of its actors and actresses – David Cassidy, Susan Dey, and Danny Bonaduce. The cast capitalized on the show’s popularity by recording a few albums which included songs like “I Think I Love You” and “Doesn’t Somebody Want to Be Wanted.” In 1956, Jones married actor Jack Cassidy, with whom she raised four children including David Cassidy. After 19 years together, they divorced. Jones would go on remarried to actor Marty Ingels in 1977. Referring to David Cassidy’s alcohol abuse and legal problems, Jones said: “We are just scared to death that we are going to wake up one morning and find out that he is dead on the floor. David has not had a relationship with anyone in the family for years. We are sick over it!” In an unfortunate irony, David Cassidy died on November 21, 2017, at the age of 67. It was reported the cause of death was organ failure complicated by early onset dementia.
Watch Shirley Jones in 1955 ‘Oklahoma!’
By Ken Warren, 2018
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