Ann B. Davis, who played beloved maid Alice Nelson on CBS’ The Brady Bunch, died Sunday after a fatal fall at her home outside San Antonio, Texas. She was 88.
Davis shared the home with Bishop William Frey, a minister friend, and his wife. The couple contends that the veteran actress, who used a walker to get around, fell and struck her head early Sunday morning. Davis was taken to nearby hospital and treated for a subdural hematoma. She never regained consciousness.
Ann first found success in Hollywood playing Charmaine “Schultzy” Schultz on The Bob Cummings Show, which ran from 1955 to 1959. The role brought Davis two Emmys and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Her most famous part, however, wouldn’t come for another decade. In 1969, Ann was cast as Alice Nelson, the beloved housekeeper in the equally beloved sitcom The Brady Bunch. She would occasionally slip back into her blue and white maid’s uniform for Brady TV movies and reunion shows throughout the 1970s and 1980s. She even appeared in five episodes of the Brady spinoff The Bradys in 1990.
As news of her death spread across social media, fans shared fond memories of their favorite memories of the domestic goddess hopelessly attached to pork chops and applesauce and Sam the Butcher. Ann’s former Brady Bunch co-stars Florence Henderson, Barry Williams, Maureen McCormick and Eve Plumb are among those who’ve paid tribute to her following the sad news.
“I’m so shocked & saddened to learn my dear friend & colleague Ann B Davis died today.I spoke with her a few months ago & she was doing great”
McCormick told The Hollywood Reporter:
“I admired Ann B. so much as an actor…She was one of the greats. Most of all, I admired her heart. She was a dear friend…deep, honest and true. She was one of my earliest role models, and that continues to this day. She made me a better person. How blessed I am to have had her in my life. She will be forever missed.”
“Ann was an amazing lady. She was great to work with, and I have wonderful memories of our scenes together on The Brady Bunch. She was kind and generous to all of us on set. Although we hadn’t seen each other as often as we may have wanted to in the last few years, I am sure she knew she held a very important place in my heart. My thoughts are with her family and friends.”
Barry Williams, who played eldest Brady kid Greg, remained close to Davis after the series ended its five season run. He remembered her during an appearance on The Today Show:
“When she came on our set she was already a big star, having won a couple of Emmys. So I knew even as a young teenager she was someone I wanted to pay attention to…Most people think of her as a really wonderful cook, but she didn’t even know how to make meatloaf!”