'Leave It to Beaver' Star Frank Bank Dies at 71
Frank Bank, best known for his role as Clarence "Lumpy" Rutherford on the classic TV series Leave It to Beaver, has died. He was 71.
The Los Angeles Times reported that Bank died Saturday, but the location and cause of death were not revealed.
His former Beaver co-star Jerry Mathers, who played the title character on the 1958-63 comedy, told the Times that he had been hospitalized recently in Rancho Mirage and had been suffering from illnesses.
"Lumpy was the ultimate bully, but Frank was a very, very kind and gentle person and a very good actor to play it so well," Mathers said. "The show was about all the people you knew growing up and throughout your life, and Frank brought that perspective to the show."
But Bank was unable to distance himself from the role after the show ended. He later reprised the character in the 1980s series The New Leave It to Beaver as well as in a 1983 TV movie, Still the Beaver. He also had a cameo as "Frank" in the 1997 movie Leave It to Beaver.
But he gave up acting for a while, becoming a stock-and-bond broker in the 1970s, with clients including Mathers and former co-star Barbara Billingsley.
Born April 12, 1942, in Los Angeles, Bank got his start with an uncredited part in the 1950 movie Cargo to Capetown and other small TV roles before landing Beaver.
His memoir, Call Me Lumpy, was published in 1997. In the book, he detailed his "perpetual sexfest" of the 1960s and revealed that he "slept with over 1,000 women."
Bank is survived by his wife, Rebecca; four daughters; and five grandchildren.