Grace Bradley

Grace Bradley

About Grace Bradley

Grace Bradley

Grace Bradley

September 21, 1913 - September 21, 2010

Place of Birth    :   Brooklyn, New York, USA
Imdb Profile    :   IMDB Profile

A petite and extremely lovely blonde "B" film actress who eventually deserted her career in favor of standing by her man (cowboy icon William Boyd, aka, "Hopalong Cassidy"), Grace Bradley spent the rest of her life in his shadow and devoting herself to her husband's career. Bill's Hoppy was the longest span of any fictional character played by the same actor. Following his death in 1972, she spent a good deal of her time keeping his good name and image in tact. Grace initially studied to be a concert pianist, playing Carngie Hall at age 15. She also took advantage of her budding loveliness by modeling full time and taking singing/dancing lessons on the sly. She went on to act, sing, and dance on the Broadway stage in the musicals "Strike Me Pink" and "The Little Show". While performing at the Paradise nightclub in Manhattan in 1933, the dancer was "discovered" and signed by a Paramount Pictures director. Heading west, she often came off as an assertive "bad girl" or femme-fatale at Paramount with such fun, party-girl names as Goldie, Trixie, Flossie, Lily and Sadie. Her first full-length movie was as a second lead in the Bing Crosby/Jack Oakie musical comedy Too Much Harmony (1933), in which she sang and danced to the feisty tune "Cradle Me With a Hotcha Lullaby". She subsequently appeared in the W.C. Fields classic Six of a Kind (1934); the Richard Arlen pictures Come On, Marines! (1934) and She Made Her Bed (1934); the Claudette Colbert/Fred MacMurray comedy The Gilded Lily (1935), and had the female lead opposite Bruce Cabot in Redhead (1934). Appearing secondary in the Bing Crosby/Ethel Merman version of Anything Goes (1936), her musical talents were tapped into with the films The Cat's-Paw (1934), Stolen Harmony (1935), Old Man Rhythm (1935), Sitting on the Moon (1936) and Wake Up and Live (1937). Elsewhere, various "B" male co-stars would include Wallace Ford, Lee Tracy, Jack Haley, John Boles, Robert Livingston, Jack Holt and Robert Armstrong. In 1937, Grace happened to cross paths with Bill Boyd, who became her "Prince Charming on a big white horse". She had a long-time school-girl crush on Boyd and was instantly smitten upon their first meeting. He was 42 and she 23. He asked her to marry him within a few days and they were married three weeks later on June 5th. Boyd had already been married four times, none lasting longer than six years. Grace would become the fifth (and last) Mrs. William Boyd in a marriage that lasted 35 years. The couple had no children together; Bill had one child from his third marriage. William Lawrence Boyd retired from show business in 1953 quite wealthy. Suffering from Parkinson's disease, he died of heart failure in Laguna Beach in 1972 at age 77. Grace went on to spend the last decades of her life devoting herself to volunteer work at the Laguna Beach hospital where her husband lived out his final days. She later withstood legal battles that stemmed from copyright infringements, but enjoyed appearing occasionally at Hopalong Cassidy tributes. The definitive biography Hopalong Cassidy - An American Legend was co-authored by Grace and Michael Cochran in 2008. Grace Bradley Boyd died,  21 September 2010, Dana Point, California. of complications from old age at age 97 on her birthday; and she was interred next to her husband at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Clendale, California.