Andy Griffith may no longer be with us, but his memory remains through his hit television series, “The Andy Griffith Show,” which still airs in syndication today. Griffith’s legacy is also kept alive through his daughter, Dixie.
During an interview with The Pilot in 2017, Dixie spoke candidly about her father, revealing what it was like to have Mayberry’s Sheriff as your dad. “I never was in awe of him as an actor. He was just my dad. He was usually gone in the morning when I woke up, but typically he would be home in the afternoon,” she recalled.
In addition, Dixie also revealed how her parents met. Barbara Edwards met Griffith while the two were performing in the Carolina Playmakers Repertory Theater at UNC-Chapel Hill. According to Dixie, Griffith first took a liking to Edwards after hearing her singing voice.
“My dad was quite taken by my mom’s operatic soprano voice,” Dixie explained.
After graduating high school in 1944, Griffith attended the University of North Carolina. Although he intended to become a preacher, Griffith switched majors and received a degree in music. When Griffith graduated in 1949, he married Barbara the same year. After settling in Goldsboro, North Carolina, Andy Griffith took a job teaching music at a local high school.
After an unsuccessful stint in New York trying to make it in show business, the couple moved back to North Carolina but kept their singing dream alive. They performed across the state as a husband-and-wife duo.
Andy Griffith’s Wife’s Tiny Cameo
A decade later, Griffith had landed the role that would make his career: playing Sheriff Andy Taylor on “The Andy Griffith Show.” During the eight years that the show was on the air, Edwards starred in one episode of her husband’s show.
In a season four episode, the show centered on the Mayberry choir. In the episode, Barney hilariously struggles to sing his notes. Later on, he’s replaced in the chorus by Gomer Pyle— not what anyone was expecting.
However, if you look closely, you’ll see someone you probably don’t recognize. In one scene, you see an unfamiliar face standing close to Barney. In the episode, she’s known only as “Sharon” and spoke just one line. “I’m sorry, Mr. Masters,” she said to the choir director. The actress was none other than Andy Griffth’s wife. She later joins in the singing of “Santa Lucia.”
Sadly, after 23 years of marriage, the couple divorced in 1972. In 1980, Edwards passed away in Beverly Hills at just 53 years old.