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June Allyson's Life Struggles from Childhood Trauma to Widowed Depression

Rebelander Basilan
Jul 27, 2019
08:00 P.M.

June Allyson was the offspring of a drunkard father, who deserted the family when she was six. However, by her mid-20s, she was a superstar who would make several movies, and would likewise star in an 18-year marriage to actor Dick Powell.

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But then, in 1963, Powell, who was 13 years her senior and had been previously married to Mildred Maund and Joan Blondell, died of cancer at 58. They shared two children — Pamela and Ricky.

In 2003, Allyson's wellbeing started to deteriorate following hip-replacement surgery.

Studio publicity photo of June Allyson for film Music for Millions (1944) | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Studio publicity photo of June Allyson for film Music for Millions (1944) | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Her husband's death provoked Allyson to begin drinking vigorously. She was then going to elope with Glenn Maxwell, Powell's barber. She and Maxwell would get hitched and divorced, then married and divorced once more.

Allyson, who was crushed by a falling tree limb while riding a bike when she was eight, also experienced a bitter court battle with her mother over custody of Pamela and Ricky.

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Photo of June Allyson and Dick Powell from The Dick Powell Show (1962) | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Photo of June Allyson and Dick Powell from The Dick Powell Show (1962) | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

As indicated by reports at the time, director Dirk Summers, with whom Allyson was romantically involved from 1963 to 1975, was named a legal guardian for her children because of a court request. Unfortunately, Summers wouldn't wed her, and the relationship did not last.

During this time, Allyson battled with liquor addiction, which she overcame in the mid-1970s.

June Allyson with Pamela and Ricky in 1955 | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

June Allyson with Pamela and Ricky in 1955 | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

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In 1975, Allyson ran into her half brother's closest companion, David Ashrow; a dentist turned actor. She was drunk when he appeared for their first date. She even attempted to send him away.

Allyson remembered that Ashrow talked his way in, and they sat up half the night conversing. After she had promised to end her drinking issue, they tied the knot a year later. Once in a while, the couple performed together in regional theater.

In 2003, Allyson's wellbeing started to deteriorate following hip-replacement surgery. With Ashrow at her side, she passed away in 2006, at her home in Ojai, California. She was 88. Her death, which was announced by her daughter Pamela, was a result of pulmonary respiratory failure and acute bronchitis.

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