'Brady Bunch' housekeeper Ann B. Davis dies in Texas

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by LORENA BLAS

USA TODAY

Posted on June 1, 2014 at 6:11 PM

Updated Sunday, Jun 1 at 10:22 PM

Ann B. Davis, who played beloved housekeeper Alice on TV's The Brady Bunch, has died in San Antonio, according to multiple reports.

Davis, who played Alice Nelson during the show's run from 1969-74, turned 88 on May 3.

She fell and hit her head in her bathroom Saturday morning, according to reports. Close friend Bishop William Frey tells CNN that Davis suffered a subdural hematoma and never regained consciousness.

She died early Sunday morning at a hospital in San Antonio, where Davis had lived for 18 years, her agent, Robert Malcolm, tells NBC News.

Known for her trademark blue dress and apron, Alice was a regular on The Brady Bunch and often brought a cheerful attitude to sometimes serious scenes among members of the television family, lead by actors Florence Henderson and Robert Reed.

Davis also returned to her famous role in the show's remakes and movie updates, including The Brady Brides and A Very Brady Christmas.

WFAA's Facebook page was flooded with loving tributes within minutes after the news of Davis' death emerged.

"I used to pretend Alice was our maid. My imaginary Alice was as kind to us as she was to those children on the show," wrote LaWinthia Rivers-Ayers. "I'm 48 and I still watch the show today. Alice made me feel like there was no prejudice in the world. Even if just for 30 minutes."

Ann Nelson Hustead wrote that she "had the privilege of meeting her many years ago... she was doing dinner theater in Dallas and attended our church while the play was running... very special lady!"

In a 2004 story in USA TODAY related to a TV Land celebration of The Brady Bunch's 35th anniversary, the never-married Davis said she was happily retired and living in a Christian community in San Antonio, where she sang in her church's choir, watched baseball on TV, played computer games and took a lot of naps.

She told USA TODAY that the only thing that disturbed her peaceful existence was Brady Bunch reunions. "This lady's trying to get retired," she said with a grumble, "and the phone keeps ringing with new things to do with The Brady Bunch."

But it was clear that she knew how important she was to the show and its impact on her, "How," Davis told USA TODAY's reporter, "could I not be part of a Brady Bunch special?"

 Davis won two Emmys for her role as "Schultzy" Schultz in "The Bob Cummings Show in the 1950s, but it was her role as Alice -- the center square in the iconic "Brady Bunch" matrix from 1969-74 -- that gained her international fame on a show that remains popular in reruns to this day.

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