Raymond Bailey bio: He was suffering from Alzheimer

Who is Raymond Bailey?

Raymond Bailey was an American actor and comedian best known for portraying Milburn Drysdale in the classic CBS television series, The Beverly Hillbillies. Born on May 6, 1904, in San Francisco, California, Bailey began his acting career in theater before transitioning to film and television.

Raymond Bailey was a powerful performer on stage, captivating audiences with his dynamic acting skills. He also made a name for himself in Hollywood, appearing in several movies and television shows throughout his career. However, his role as the scheming banker Milburn Drysdale in The Beverly Hillbillies catapulted him to stardom.

Bailey’s portrayal of Drysdale, the greedy banker constantly trying to protect his wealthy clients, became a fan favorite and helped cement The Beverly Hillbillies place in television history. Raymond Bailey continued to work in film and television until his death on April 15, 1980, at 75 due to a heart attack. Despite his passing, his legacy lives on as a talented performer and beloved figure in the entertainment industry.

Raymond Bailey Biography
Raymond Bailey Biography

Quick Facts

Full NameRaymond Thomas Bailey
Also Known AsRay
BirthdayMay 6, 1904
DeathApril 15, 1980, due to a heart attack
Age75 years
Sun signTaurus
TraitsPositive- Punctual, Persistent, and Organised
Negative- Inflexible, Possessive, and Materialistic
BirthplaceSan Francisco, California, USA
Current residenceIrvine, California USA
ParentsWilliam Bailey,
Alice Bailey
SiblingsEmma Bailey,
Gertrude Mildred Bailey,
Hazel Bailey
Marital statusMarried
SpouseGaby Aida George
EducationBachelors in Finance
Worked as a stockbroker and banker,
Net WorthUSD 600,000
Social mediaNot applicable
Height5 feet and 10 inches
Hair ColorDark Brown
Eyes ColorBrown


Young photo of Raymond Bailey
Young photo of Raymond Bailey

Raymond Bailey, born on May 6, 1904, in San Francisco, California, was the son of William and Alice Bailey. Growing up, Bailey developed a keen interest in acting and dreamed of making it big in Hollywood.

At the age of 16, Bailey decided to move to Los Angeles to pursue his dream of becoming a movie star. Unfortunately, he found it challenging to land significant roles and took on various temporary jobs to support himself. During the day, Bailey worked as a laborer at a movie studio that produced silent pictures, but he was eventually fired after sneaking into a mob scene during a film shoot.

Bailey then worked as a stockbroker and banker before eventually relocating to New York in the hopes of landing roles in theater. However, he faced several rejections and struggled to make a name for himself in the industry.

Determined to succeed, Bailey started working as a merchant seaman and traveled to different parts of the world. During one of his voyages, he sailed to Hawaii and worked on a pineapple plantation while docked there. Bailey also acted at the Hawaiian community theater and worked as a singer on a local radio program, honing his skills as a performer.

Despite his challenges early on in his career, Bailey’s perseverance and dedication paid off. He eventually succeeded in Hollywood and became a beloved actor and comedian known for his dynamic performances on stage, in film, and on television. Bailey passed away on April 15, 1980, but his legacy as a talented performer and hardworking individual lives on.

Parents and siblings

Raymond Bailey was the son of William and Alice Bailey. Not much is known about his parents, but they raised him in San Francisco, California, where he was born and spent his childhood.

Raymond had 3 siblings Emma Bailey, Gertrude Mildred Bailey, and Hazel Bailey. He is the youngest of all.

It can be safely assumed that he came from a working-class middle-income family. Even though he wanted to become an actor, his parents ensured he didn’t quit his education. As a result, Bailey could switch to a stockbroker and a banker career when things didn’t go as his career planned.

Marriage and children

Raymond Bailey with his wife and Friends

Raymond Bailey was married to Gaby Aida George. They married in August 1951. Bailey’s wife passed away in 1985. She was just 71 years old. Besides that, the couple has no children from their marriage.

As far as Raymond Bailey’s marriage and love affair go, that is the only information available.


TV Career

In 1938, Raymond Bailey returned to Hollywood to try his luck in acting again. This time he was able to land some minor roles in movies. 

Raymond began getting attention as an actor after being cast as the character of Mr. West in the action-adventure serial The Green Hornet. During World War II, Raymond Bailey served in the United States Merchant Marine and returned back to Hollywood after the end of the war.

Milburn Drysdale Photo
Raymond Bailey Photo

In the early 1950s, Raymond Bailey acted in several TV series such as Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Tales of Tomorrow, Frontier, Crusader, My Friend Flicka, Gunsmoke, Tightrope, Coronado 9, and Johnny Ringo.

Moreover, he also made appearances in The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, Private Secretary, Playhouse 90, The Rifleman, Laramie, Bat Masterson, The Jack Benny Program, Yancy Derringer, Riverboat, Bourbon Street Beat, 77 Sunset Strip, Hennesey, and The Twilight Zone.

Similarly, Raymond acted in The Untouchables, Have Gun-Will Travel, The Tab Hunter Show, Pete and Gladys, The Donna Reed Show, Bachelor Father, Going My Way, The Tom Ewell Show, The Investigators, Science Fiction Theatre, Whirlybirds, Mister Ed, and Wagon Train.

In addition, the renowned character actor guest-starred on several TV shows, including Perry Mason, The Case of the Caretaker’s Cat, Harrigan and Son, and The Case of the Injured Innocent. From 1960 to 1961, Bailey was cast as a series regular on My Sister Eileen. Likewise, he played the role of Dean McGruder in The Many Loves Of Dobie Gillis.

Raymond Bailey’s biggest TV role was in the CBS sitcom The Beverly Hilbillies, where he portrayed the role of Milburn Drysdale. He appeared in 247 episodes. 

Unfortunately, Bailey began displaying symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease during the sitcom’s final few episodes. Bailey eventually retired from acting in 1975. 

Broadway and Film Career

Raymond Bailey made his broadway debut in 1944 in Last Stop, where he played the role of Howard Haines. He played the role of an unknown man in the 1953 play The Bat. 

Likewise, Bailey acted in plays such as Sing Till Tomorrow and The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial. In 1954, he played the role of a board member in Sabrina. The film starred Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn, and William Holden. 

Bailey’s other film roles include Picnic, Vertigo, No Time for Sergeants, I Want to Live!, and The Lineup. In addition, he played the role of lawyer Brancato in the 1959 crime drama Al Capone. 

In addition, he was cast as Major General Alexander “Archie” Vandegrift in The Gallant Hours. Bailey played the role of a plantation owner in Band of Angels in 1957. His final film appearances were in Herbie Rides Again and The Strongest Man in the World.

Raymond Bailey in his last days
Raymond Bailey, in his last days


After retiring from acting in 1975, Raymond Bailey became somewhat of a recluse. In his final years, Bailey only kept in touch with his former The Beverly Hillbillies co-star Nancy Kulp. 

The actor divided his time between a condominium and his houseboat in Laguna Niguel, California. At 75, Raymond Bailey died of a heart attack in Irvine, California, on April 15, 1980.

Bailey’s body was cremated. His ashes were scattered at sea. 

Raymond Bailey Net worth

At his death, Raymond Bailey had a net worth of approximately USD 600,000. A net worth of USD 600K during the 1980s is quite impressive. 

Bailey accumulated such impressive net worth due to his acting and comedian career. In addition, his work on the Broadway stage, in films, and on television immensely helped enhance his net worth. 

Before being an actor, Bailey worked as a merchant seaman. As a result, Raymond Bailey lived a luxurious life that most could only dream of. 


What happened to Raymond Bailey?

Raymond Bailey was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease towards the end of his life. He passed away on April 15, 1980, at 75, due to a heart attack.

Did Raymond Bailey ever play on Gunsmoke?

Raymond Bailey appeared in the Gunsmoke episode as General Parsley Smith in 1955.

How old was Raymond Bailey when he died?

Raymond Bailey passed away on April 15, 1980, at 75.

Was Raymond Bailey on the Twilight Zone?

Bailey played a Doctor, Millar, Supervisor in The Twilight zone TV series.

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