Marion Ross Biography, Life, Interesting Facts


Marion Ross

Birthday :

October 25, 1928

Also Known For :

TV Actress

Birth Place :

Watertown, Minnesota, United States of America

Zodiac Sign :


Marion Ross was born on October 25, 1928, in Watertown, Minnesota, United States. She is a prominent American actress best known for her particular role as Marion Cunningham in ‘Happy Days.’ She appeared from 1974 to 1984 and was nominated twice for the Primetime Emmy Award. She also appeared in several films including ‘The Glenn Miller Story’ (1954), ‘Sabrina’  (1954), ‘Lust for Life’ (1956), ‘Teacher's Pet’  (1958), ‘Some Came Running’ (1958), ‘Operation Petticoat ‘ (1959) and ‘Honky ‘ (1971).

Early Life

Marion Ross was born on October 25, 1928, in Watertown, Carver County, Minnesota. She was the daughter of Gordon Ross and Ellen Hamilton Ross who lived initially in Waconia. The family relocated to Willmar and later settled in Albert Lea, Minnesota. She had desired to become an actress when she grew up and at the age of thirteen changed her name from Marian to Marion.

After high school, she joined the MacPhail Center for the Arts in Minneapolis, Minnesota to study drama. She later attended Southwest High School before her family moved to San Diego, California. She became a student at Point Loma High School in San Diego from where she graduated.  

Marion Ross joined San Diego State University and participated in the drama clubs where she was named the best actress. In 1950, she graduated from San Diego State University and did her first performance in La Jolla, California.



In 1953, Marion Ross featured in her first made film titled ‘Forever Female’ alongside starring Ginger Rogers and William Holden. Several other films followed including ‘The Glenn Miller Story ‘ (1954), ‘Sabrina’  (1954), ‘Lust for Life’ (1956), ‘Lizzie’ (1957), ‘Teacher's Pet’  (1958), ‘Some Came Running’ (1958), ‘Operation Petticoat’ (1959), ‘Colossus: The Forbin Project’ (1970), ‘Honky’ (1971) and ‘Grand Theft Auto’ (1977). 

She also featured in a number of early television series’ like ‘Life With Father’ (1953), ‘The Lone Ranger’ (1954), ‘Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer’ (1958), ‘The Donna Reed Show’ (1959), ‘The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show’, ‘The Millionaire’ (1956), ‘Steve Canyon’, ‘Perry Mason: The Case of the Romantic Rogue’,  ‘Buckskin’,  ‘The Barbara Stanwyck Show’,  ‘Father Knows Best’,  ‘The Outer Limits’,  ‘Thriller’, ‘The Special One’, ‘The Man in the Mirror’, ‘The Brothers Brannagan’, ‘The Eleventh Hour’, ‘Route 66’, ‘Mr. Novak’, ‘Death Valley Days,’ ‘Hawaii Five-O,’ ‘The Brady Bunch,’ ‘The Fugitive’ and ‘Night Court.’

From 1974 to 1984, Marion Ross featured on the ABC sitcom ‘Happy Days’ as matriarch Marion Cunningham. This latter work earned her an Emmy Award nomination. She also featured in the film ‘The Love Boat’ between 1978 and 1986 and also in ‘Brooklyn Bridge’ from 1991 to 1993. Her recent appearances have included roles in ‘The Evening Star’ as Rosie Dunlop (1996) which earned her a nomination for the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress.

She also appeared in ‘Touched by an Angel,’ ‘The Drew Carey Show,’ ‘That '70s Show’, ‘Gilmore Girls’ and ‘Hollywood Squares.’ She has also featured in films as voice character including ‘King of the Hill’ as Ms. Wakefield, ‘Spongebob Squarepants’ as Grandma Squarepants, ‘Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness’ as Crane’s mother and ‘Handy Manny’ as Ms. Lopart.

In 2007 Marion Ross played a role in ‘Music Within’ and later appeared in ‘Brothers & Sisters’ as Ida Holden. In June 2008 she appeared in ‘Superhero Movie’ as Aunt Lucille and later starred in ‘Nurse Jackie’ and ‘Grey's Anatomy’ in 2010. She made subsequent appearances in ‘Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster ‘as Mrs. Trowburg, ‘The Middle’ (2013) and ‘Two and a Half Men’ (2014). She retired from acting in 2018.


Personal Life

Marion Ross was first married to Freeman Meskimen in 1951 and had two children. They divorced in 1969 and was married to Paul Michael in 1988 and remained married until his death on July 8, 2011. Currently, she resides in Cardiff by the sea neighboring city of Encinitas, California. She is presently eighty nine years old.

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