“The Andy Griffith Show” is all about family and nostalgia. The sitcom ran from 1960 to 1988 and starred Andy Griffith as Andy Taylor, a widowed sheriff.
Alongside him were Barney Fife, Bee Taylor, Opie, and other people from the small, dreamy town. The show was filmed in the ’60s but is in many ways reminiscent of the ’30s. This means even when it was on it was a story of an older time. Now, while fans continue to watch reruns, it’s nostalgic once again.
For Andy Griffith, the show had a lot of meaning. Not only was it his landmark role in the industry, but there were a number of special and memorable moments that occurred throughout the show.
Andy Griffith’s Wife on the Show
One of these memorable moments is when a part of his real-life family got to join him on the show.
Throughout the show, viewers saw a lot of the sheriff’s girlfriends. There was Ellie Walker, Peggy McMillan, and Mary Simpson as just a few.
Barney had a crush on a singer and joined as a tenor for the Mayberry choir. However, he is basically tone-deaf and struggles to get through his parts of the song. The gang decides to have his microphone connected to someone else singing.
During all this chaos another member of the choir delivers one line. Her name was Sharon and she said, “I’m sorry, Mr. Masters,” directed at the choir director. It is her only television credit and it was incredibly brief.
Andy and Barbara Marriage
Andy Griffith was married three times during his life. His first wife was Barbara. The two got married in 1949 and were together for 23 years. They were divorced in 1972.
After that, Griffith married his second wife, Solica Cassuto in 1973. They were then divorced in 1981. Finally, his last wife was Cindi Knight whom he married in 1983.
As for Barbara, the two also adopted two children while they were together. They had a son named Andy Samuel Griffith Jr. and a daughter named Dixie Nann Griffith.
The two met while they were both going to the University of North Carolina. He originally was a divinity student before changing his major to a Bachelor of Music degree. He fell in love with Barbara Edwards who was also involved in music.
The two graduated and were married the same year. She was a music teacher in a high school while Griffith searched for a career in the music or acting business. The two also had their own acts they would perform in their area. This is where Griffith performed “What It Was, Was Football” which got a lot of attention and helped thrust him into stardom.
Andy Griffith’s Son
Griffith’s son, who went by Sam, passed away in 1996 from alcoholism.
When Andy and Barbara divorced, she received custody of their daughter and he received custody of Sam. According to Showbiz CheatSheet, Griffith had “emotionally disinherited” Sam and stopped contact with him. This was after he discovered how much his son had started depending on alcohol.
In 1992, Sam was placed on probation for beating up his pregnant wife.
Despite their difficult relationship, Griffith was troubled by his son’s death in 1996.