June Haver was born on June 10, 1926, in Rock Island, Illinois, with the birth name of Beverly June Stovenour. Her parents divorced at an early age and she was adopted by Bert Haver, her stepfather. Her mother and new father moved to Cincinnati, where she appeared on the stage for the first time at the age of six in a local theater production of “Midnight in a Toyshop”. Very soon after, June was winning musical contests around the Queen City. By 1936, little June and her mother had returned to the city of her birth, after a film screen test the year before. It was here that she blossomed even further with her singing, appearing on local radio. Later, while touring with various musical bands, June and her mother found their way to sunny California, in the entertainment mecca of Los Angeles. While in high school, she played in various secondary productions.
In 1942, at the age of 16, June joined Fox Studios as a fringe actress. Dropped because the studio thought she was too young, they signed her the following year to appear in The Gang’s All Here (1943). It was an uncredited part, but a start in the film world, nonetheless. Unless one looked hard, she would have been easy to miss in the film. Her next one with Fox was in 1944’s Home in Indiana (1944). But it was her next film where she was able to showcase her acting talent in Irish Eyes Are Smiling (1944). In 1945, she appeared in Where Do We Go from Here? (1945) with her future husband, Fred MacMurray, who she wed in 1954.
It was the only film the two of them would be in together. In 1946, at the age of 20, June got top billing for the first time in Three Little Girls in Blue (1946). Her only other film that year was Wake Up and Dream (1946). After only one film in 1947, June resurfaced the next year in the utterly forgettable Scudda Hoo! Scudda Hay! (1948). This was one of the starting vehicle’s for a rising talent named Marilyn Monroe. In 1949, June was in two productions. They were Look for the Silver Lining (1949) and Oh, You Beautiful Doll (1949). By now, it was obvious that she was being groomed to take over the Fox throne held by Betty Grable. It was not to be, because June was about to leave films, altogether. The filming of 1953’s The Girl Next Door (1953) proved to be her last silver screen appearance. She had announced, the year before, that she would become a nun after her contract ran out. True to her word, she entered the convent but only stayed a few months.
It was after she left the convent that she was seen with Fred MacMurray. After they were wed, the couple adopted twin girls. June’s last foray into the glare of the camera lights was when she played herself in the television production of The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour (1957). She died of respiratory failure in Brentwood, California on July 6, 2005.
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