Mary Tyler Moore (born on December 29, 1936) is an American actress and comedian, perhaps best known for The Mary Tyler Moore Show, in which she starred as Mary Richards, a 30ish single woman who worked as a news producer at WJM-TV in Minneapolis.
The oldest of three siblings, Moore was born in Flatbush section of Brooklyn, New York to George Tyler Moore and Marjorie Hackett. She moved to California when she was eight years old. She attended Saint Rose of Lima Roman Catholic school in Brooklyn, and Notre Dame convent school in Hollywood. At the age of 17, she started off with a role as "Happy Hotpoint" on television commercials broadcast during Ozzie and Harriet. During these commercials she would dance around on the Hotpoint appliances (a General Electric subsidiary). She also played Rob's (Dick Van Dyke) lovely wife Laura in The Dick Van Dyke Show. After that, she appeared in several bit parts in movies and on TV shows including Bourbon Street Beat, 77 Sunset Strip, Steve Canyon, and Hawaiian Eye. She auditioned for the role of the older daughter of Danny Thomas for his long-running hit TV show, but was turned down. Much later, Thomas explained that "no daughter of mine could have that (little) nose."
In 1955 she married Dick Meeker, whom she described as "the boy next door," and was pregnant with her only son Richie within six weeks. Meeker and Moore divorced in 1961, and Richie accidentally shot and killed himself when the hair trigger on his gun went off - the gun was later removed from the market for same reason. International headlines announced that Meeker killed himself when playing a game of Russian Roulette in front of two female friends. Authorities later ruled the episode an accident. A few years earlier, Moore's sister had committed suicide. Her last remaining sibling died of cancer (Moore claimed that she had helped him end his life with an overdose of painkillers), and her mother, who suffered from alcoholism is also deceased, leaving only her father, George Moore, who lives in California.