Back in 1998, I had this email exchange with Stanley Fafara. Here is our entire conversation in its raw form:
Hello my name is Stanley Fafara and I played "Whitey" on the show and I thought it appropriate to send you my new web address at the "Leave it to Beaver"
http://www.teleport.com/~whitey God bless Stanley Fafara "Whitey"
To: STANLEY A FAFARA Date: Wednesday, July 15, 1998 8:16 AM Subject: Re: HI Thanks for the information. I'm updating my page at the end of the month, and I'll be including this link then. I have some questions I'd like to ask, such as trivia, working with the other actors/writers, and the LITB phenonina and how it's effected you. Do you have the time/interest to answer some questions? Tim
Hi Tim, Sure I'll answer what I can. I took a turn out of the mainstream for a while but I'll try my best to answer any questions you may have. Thanks for linking me also. Great site! God bless "Whitey" Stanley Fafara
> >Stanley, > > Thanks for answering some questions. Here's a set: > >1) Your TV credits appear to end in the early sixties. Did you have >any acting ambitions after you finished LITB? Not really, but I did some local appearances at dinner theatres and the like, being the guest of honor at various clubs in Southern California. >But I didn't have any interest in continuing with acting at the time. >2) What did you do after you completed high school/college? I traveled quite a bit. Lived on the Island of Jamaica for a year with my sister and had an art show. 72 paintings in all. Then continued traveling throughout the United States, shall we say.....searching? Went back to college twice. I just finished Business Computer Training Institute here in Portland now and have been for a few years. >3) What was your impression of Mosher and Connely? I actually never met them except when I interviewed for the part and I was quite young. Once in a while they would be in and out of the set but I barely recollect much of that. >4) I see from your page that you're an air brush artist. Is any of >your work accessible on-line? Not at the moment but I will be putting together some works in the near future. I am not sure how I will market. >5) I also see you help those with substance abuse. How did you pick >the effort for your volunteer activities? It comes with the package. Kind of like a deal gone good. I get a lot of pleasure out of service but the bottom line is that whether I am in the mood to help or not, doesn't really matter. It's payment for a new life. By the grace of God my life has been spared and I owe it to others to help them find the freedom I have enjoyed. It's been a pleasure answering your questions. Sincerely, "Whitey" Stan Fafara
>Stanley, > > A couple of more questions: > > >1) What was your impression of Norman Tokar? Excellent director. We were a handful and I can say I may have been one of the hardest to work with, nevertheless, he had a knack for getting the most out of us. A little impatient at times and short tempered from what I can remember, but in reflection it certainly was understandable. >2) Since you've recently finished the Computer Training Institute, >are you currently looking for a job in Computer Training, or already >employed in this vocation? Was your emphasis on applications, such as >Excel and Dbase, or more programming, such as C or Java?
I was working for Pacific Care and data entry clerk but decided to take my artistic talents and add them to the computer skills I have learned and see what comes out of that. I was taught almost all of the business applications such as Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint and I must admit that I learned them well and received good grades, but it isn't as enjoyable as programs like Macromedias Director and Flash. The web is so interesting and along with my fine art skills and a basic background in design, it is what I am pursuing right now. I am learning some Java, but the programs I am using write the script for you. That's a good way to learn though. Same way I learned HTML. Just like reading you begin to learn what it means.
>3) Did you ever serve in the armed forces? I was ready to be inducted in the Navy in 68 and was arrested on a marijuana charge. No comment.
>4) I read some urban legend on the net that you worked in a furniture >store as a saleman somewhere back in the midwest. Is this correct? No, but I have had numerous jobs. Too many to mention here. >5) Are you going to be at Jerry Mather's upcoming 50th birthday party? If we can find each other I would be happy to go.
>Stanley, > > Thanks for answering my questions. I hope you don't mind another set: > >1) I've noticed the success of LITB didn't carry financially into the >early adult years for most of the child actors. After school, it >seems like everyone pretty much got regular jobs and lived regular >lives. At one time, Jerry worked at a loan officer, Ken as an LA Cop, >Tony as a construction foreman, and so on. Why do you suppose this is? I can only answer for myself and the way my contract was is that I had what they call a running part. I was paid full amount (scale) after shooting. Once again, the full amount after airing but then the checks were 1/2 for the second airing, 1/3 for the third etc.. until it dwindled to 0. I know they had different contracts than me and I also know that after being typecast in one show for so long it is difficult to get work. It is just the way it is. The public sees the character and not the man. >2) When people meet you, do they often hassle you for talking Beaver >into the bowel of soup? No. In fact most people will agree that was the best one ever shot. >3) Have you ever sold any of your works? Are any of them currently on display? I sold quite a few in Jamaica and there are many scattered across the country. My sister said that two of them are in the University of West Indies but that was some time ago. I heard that a very large landscape I did in Jamaica was taken to England and placed in a bank somewhere but I am not sure of that either, nevertheless, they are, like I said all over the country. You might say I used to sell them for a song and a dance.
>4) What's the most common question people ask you? What happened? P.S. I would like to go to the reunion but I don't think I should walk in uninvited. We will see what happens. Hopefully I can contact someone prior to the party. I have had trouble contacting my brother but he may be going and if I can talk with him I'll find out. If that's the case, maybe we both could go. It's been a long time and I could use the support. Keep in touch!! >5) Are you going to be at Jerry Mather's upcoming 50th birthday >party? If we can find each other I would be happy to go. >Well, I read in the paper he's having some birthday party the last >weekend of August at some high school stadium in southern California. >Let me know if you're interested in going. I'll be driving down >there around that time for business for a few days (I live in Seattle >so I'm passing right by your town. > > Tim >
> >Stanley, > > Another round: > > >1) At the time when you were making LITB, did you think the show was >square, or did you think it was pretty much typical middle class >America and how most families existed? > I was so involved in the making of the show I invariably focused on how well I did my part. Filming, as you probably know, is done in the most convenient way, rather than the way it appears to be shot. In other words it isn't shot in order so I had a different view on it. >2) Do you ever collect LITB items? No, but I wished I had. >3) How did you manage schooling when you were filming LITB? It is mandatory to have three hours of school on the set. I would get my homework the night before from my teachers and usually do it then so I had free time to draw and study my lines once again when I got to the sound stage. >4) What was your review of the LITB movie out about 18 months ago? Never saw it. 5) At the time LITB was being made, do you know if anyone ever mentioned that the show had no minorities on it? Never thought about it and never heard anything either. Although I know some of the variations came from Amos and Andy.
>Another round: > >Were there any cast members that you were good friends with, or any >members that you didn't get along with? > I was pretty unruly and full of energy. A real pain in the but to be blunt but Larry was my closest buddy. >Can you think of one particular story of interest that you can >share of high-jinx or practical jokes that went on back-stage during >the filming. Not to many practical jokes that I can remember but I do recall a scene that took literally hours to shoot because we couldn't stop laughing at a joke that someone told earlier before shooting. Norman Tokar had us break for lunch and we still didn't get it until the end of the day.
>Did your parents act as your agents? Margaritte Ogg was my original agent and then my mom managed me near the end of the show. >Why didn't you continue to pursue an acting career as you became a young adult? I was tired of being in the spotlight all the time and wanted to be like a regular kid. I think all of us went through that to some extent. I am not saying that I am ungrateful to have been a part of such a classic show but it was just time to retire...HA HA
>How did you learn the news that LITB was cancelled, and what was >your first reaction? We all knew that it was seven years and that was it.
>Stanley, > > A couple more: > > >1) Do many people ask you for autographs? Yes they do. >2) Do you ever do guest appearances at trade shows, radio programs, >and the such? I haven't in quite a while. >3) Do you ever have a desire to resume a job in front of or behind the camera? I would like to be a part of it in one way or another. >4) I was talking with one of the extras on one of the shows, and he said Jerry Mathers >appeared to him to be a bit snobby and conceited. Would you say this perception was >accurate or inaccurate? I didn't see that in Jerry at all. We were just kids. >5) What did you guys do in-between shootings to pass the time? Sometimes we would pass a football around or play catch if we had already finished our homework.
>Stanley, > > More questions: > >1) Are you married? Kids? I am divorced and have no children. >2) If/Where/When did you go to college? Alleghany community college in Pittsburg Pennsylvania in 1975.
>3) Did any of your other brothers/sisters get into acting? How did >your sister end up on the island of Jamica? My brother Luke Fafara was Tooey on the show and my two sisters were professional dancers. My older sister married a Scotsman who worked for the British Government installing computer systems on the Island of Jamaica in the 70's. >4) Was all of the shooting done on a lot, or did you ever go on-site >to some location to shot? I never went on location while on the Beaver show, but I have been on location while shooting "Wagon Train" and "Wanted Dead or Alive." I also had a bit part on the "Rifleman" which was shoot away from the studio. >5) What was the make-up process for you before shooting? What did >they do, and how long did it take? Make up was at 6:00 AM and it took almost an hour sometimes. Oil make-up.
>Allright, another round: > >1) What is the selling point of your book? Jerry's new book has >already told the LITB story, and Frank Bank had a good story with all >of his womanizing. Therefore, what's the angle of your book? I don't know if you have read any Og Mandino or Norman Vincent Peale but my book is about a man who seemed to have thrown it all away only to find what he was looking for in the first place which turned out to be the Loving all powerful hand of God. That is what happened to me. I just took the long way home.
>2) What famous people did you see, if any, while eating in the >commissary at the studio?
John Wayne, Chuck Conners, Steve McQueen, when he was shooting Wanted Dead or Alive I had a bit part. All the cast of Wagon Train. Quite a few actually when I think about it. Lotetta Young, Ronald Regan. I am sure if I strained the brain I could think of more. You have to remember a lot of things were going on and still are at Universal, Paramount and MGM, just to name a few. >3) Did you attend private or public school after shooting LITB? I think one of my downfalls early on was not listening to my parents and going to a Christian College and instead I attended North Hollywood High. It sure was fun at the time though and looking back I have absolutely no regrets except for causing trouble within the family. I certainly did what I wanted and there were hardly no exceptions. I can only change myself Tim and I have made a lot of effort to do that. >4) What was the last TV or movie you were in? It was The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grim. There was some background action in Fast Times at Ridgemont High and of course many re-runs but the MGM production of a number of Grimms fairy tales was the last time I was ever filmed professionally.
>5) What was your first car? Actually I had a go-cart at the age of 12 that went 105 MPH, but my first car was a 1967 Dodge Dart muscle car, 383, positraction, well, you know what I mean! Fast but a little too light in the rear. Thanks Tim and I haven't heard from my brother or anyone from the show. I have absolutely no contacts anymore. Don't even know where my brother is. Pretty sad huh?
>Stanley, > >Thanks for your willingness to take the time and answer these >questions. I certainly appreciate it. Another round: > >1) How far is your book right now? I have a rough draft of about 100 or so pages. Needs a lot of work and am going to try for finishing by Christmas.
>2) How did you get your start in acting? Mom got me an agent and I was fortunate enough to land a couple of commercials and then the Beaver show. >3) No one ever forgets their first car. Your first car sounds pretty >good. What happened to it? I sold it to my dad and bought a chevy. >4) Did you watch the show when it was on television? Occasionally just to critique my acting and see what I could do better. >5) Do you know how many people the producers auditioned for the part >of Whitey? There were over one hundred kids when I got to Revue Studios for the casting call. PS I would like to go down south but right now [to Jerry Mather's 50th birthday party, which we were talking about] my finances are low and also without a formal invite I would feel as if I was a party crasher. You know what I mean? Still would like to go and see if my brother is there and maybe could talk and break down some of the walls between us. If there are any. Haven't seen him in ten years or so.
Hi Tim My Employment specialist got a hold of the contact you sent me but I haven't heard a thing back from him. So I guess that's about all I can do for now. Thanks for the information and I will eventually hear from Ed sometime in the future. Hopefully, Stan Fafara "Whitey"
Dear Tim, He e-mailed me back and offered to help me in the meantime and said he forwarded the info to Jerry's people. Thank you very much for the connection. Gods grace Stan Fafara "Whitey"
>Hi, > >It's good to back online - I was at a customer's site last week. My >gig in California isn't going to happen, but I'll probably be in Portland >in the next three months - would you want to get together for lunch sometime? > In the meantime, another round of questions: > >1) Did you have a favorite director of LITB that you liked working with? Hugh Beaumont when he directed was the best. >2) Did you ever fish much in the pond behind the studio that they used >as Miller's pond? That's a joke right? >3) Did you ever have a crush on Sue Randell? I know growing up as a >little guy, she was my favorite teacher. As a matter of fact I was in love with her at age 7! She was the model teacher. >4) Did the studio ever put restrictions on your appearance, such as >not getting a buzz cut? Not that I am aware of. >5) Do you have any memories of Florence Bush (sp?) Everytime I see >the ending credits role by, I see she was the makeup person, and I >always wondered what she did. To tell you the truth I don't know who she is or even if she really exists. Lunch sounds good. Let me know before hand so I can arrange to be available. Gods grace Stan Fafara "Whitey"
>Stanley, > > How about another round: > > >1) Do you prefer people calling you 'Stan' or 'Stanley'? Stan >2) I heard that Sue Randell was a big smoker. Did you ever see her >puffing away on the set? I also heard some urban legend that later in >life she was in some auto accident that left her face disfigured - >ever heard this? I heard something about her being in an accident but don't know for sure. As far as smoking I am not sure either. A lot of people smoked in those days. >3) What do you remember, if anything, about Doris Packet, who played >Ms. Rayburn? No >4) What did you think of the new LITB movie? Never saw it. >5) Didn't you appear on "Still the Beaver?", in 1982? No, they couldn't find me. Oh yeah. Just a reminder it is friendship week and here is a little something to pass on. Friends....>>>> Mark was walking home from school one day when he noticed the boy ahead of him had tripped and dropped all of the books he was carrying, along with two sweaters, a baseball bat, a glove and a small tape recorder. Mark knelt down and helped the boy pick up the scattered articles. Since they were going the same way, he helped to carry part of the burden. As they walked Mark discovered the boy's name was Bill, that he loved video games, baseball and history, and that he was having lots of trouble with his other subjects and that he had just broken up with his girlfriend.
They arrived at Bill's home first and Mark was invited in for a Coke and to watch some television. The afternoon passed pleasantly with a few laughs and some shared small talk, then Mark went home. They continued to see each other around school, had lunch together once or twice, then They both graduated from junior high school. They ended up in the same high school where they had brief contacts over the years. Finally the long-awaited senior year came and three weeks before graduation, Bill asked Mark if they could talk. Bill reminded him of the day years ago when they had first met. "Did you ever wonder why I was carrying so many things home that day?" asked Bill. "You see, I cleaned out my locker because I didn't want to leave a mess for anyone else. I had stored away some of my mothers sleeping pills and I was going home to commit suicide. But after we spent some time together talking and laughing, I realized that if I had killed myself, I would have missed that time and so many others that might follow. So you see, Mark, when you picked up those books that day, you did a lot more, you saved my life. Every little hello, every little smile, every helping hand saves a hurting heart. Pass it on. With this email also comes the token that says that YOU are special. There's a miracle called Friendship that dwells in the heart. You don't know how it happens Or when it gets started but, you know the special lift it always brings and you realize that Friendship Is God's most precious gift! It's National Friendship Week, Friends are a very rare jewel, indeed. They make you smile and encourage you to succeed. They lend an ear, they share a word of praise, and they always want to open their heart to us. Show your friend show much you care.....Send this to everyone you consider a FRIEND, even the person that sent this to you. If it comes back to you, then you'll know you have a Friend for life. Show your friends how much you appreciate them and what they mean to you.........
Happy Friendship Week!!! Stan
You Make a Difference ~~~ ***** ~~~ A teacher in New York decided to honor each of her seniors in high school by telling them the difference they each made. Using a process developed by Helice Bridges of Del Mar, California she called each student to the front of the class, one at a time. First she told them how the student made a difference to her and the class. Then she presented each of them with a blue ribbon imprinted with gold letters which read, "Who I Am Makes a Difference." Afterwards the teacher decided to do a class project to see what kind of impact recognition would have on a community. She gave each of the students three more ribbons and instructed them to go out and spread this acknowledgment ceremony. Then they were to follow up on the results, see who honored whom and report back to the class in about a week. One of the boys in the class went to a junior executive in a nearby company and honored him for helping him with his career planning. He gave him a blue ribbon and put it on his shirt. Then he gave him two extra ribbons, and said, "We're doing a class project on recognition, and we'd like you to go out, find somebody to honor, give them a blue ribbon, then give them the extra blue ribbon so they can acknowledge a third person to keep this acknowledgment ceremony going. Then please report back to me and tell me what happened." Later that day the junior executive went in to see his boss, who had been noted, by the way, as being kind of a grouchy fellow. He sat his boss down and he told him that he deeply admired him for being a creative genius. The boss seemed very surprised. The junior executive asked him if he would accept the gift of the blue ribbon and would he give him permission to put it on him. His surprised boss said, "Well, sure." The junior executive took the blue ribbon and placed it right on his boss's jacket above his heart. As he gave him the last extra ribbon, he said, "Would you do me a favor? Would you take this extra ribbon and pass it on by honoring somebody else? The young boy who first gave me the ribbons is doing a project in school and we want to keep this recognition ceremony going and find out how it affects people." That night the boss came home to his 14-year-old son and sat him down. He said, "The most incredible thing happened to me today. I was in my office and one of the junior executives came in and told me he admired me and gave me a blue ribbon for being a creative genius. Imagine. He thinks I'm a creative genius. Then he put this blue ribbon that says 'Who I A Makes A Difference' on my jacket above my heart. He gave me an extra ribbon and asked me to find somebody else to honor. As I was driving home tonight, I started thinking about whom I would honor with this ribbon and I thought about you. I want to honor you. "My days are really hectic and when I come home I don't pay a lot of attention to you. Sometimes I scream at you for not getting good enough grades in school and for your bedroom being a mess, but somehow tonight, I just wanted to sit here and, well, just let you know that you do make a difference to me. Besides your mother, you are the most important person in my life. You're a great kid and I love you!" The startled boy started to sob and sob, and he couldn't stop crying. His whole body shook. He looked up at his father and said through his tears, "I was planning on committing suicide tomorrow, Dad, because I didn't think you loved me. Now I don't need to." -Helice Bridges
Sounds good. I guess we could meet somewhere downtown. Name a place in the downtown area and I'll confirm and be there. I am going through some things that I would like to talk to a fellow Christian about. Gods grace Stan >Stan, > > I just found out that I'm going to be in Portland tomorrow, Friday. >I have some free time around noon, about 11 am - 1 pm. If you're >available, I'd like to take you out to lunch. > > > Tim > > >
Hey Tim just got your message and I am going to Seattles Best to get my coffee right now. It is on 6th and SW Alder right downtown. I will take your pager # with me and contact you from there if I don't see you in a while. I will be there by 12 noon. Stan "Whitey"
> Call me at my pager at XXX, or email me, with a time and >restaurant you want to meet at. I don't know to many restaurants in >the downtown area to well. I will be checking my email when I get >down there, and I'll also have my cell phone on me. > > > Tim
Hi there Tim. I will be mailing you about 85 pages of material that I have already written. I might add that I am not the writer I thought I was when I began this project but nevertheless it will be sent around the first of the month. I am also going to summarize some of the details later that happened between the early 80's till now and that will be sent to you either in tape form or written. I will begin that shortly. Let me know the correct address to send the manuscript. I seem to have misplaced your card somewhere so I need the correct information before I can mail it. Gods grace Stan P.S. By the way the side-effects of the Interferon is being tolerated very well! Other than feeling like I have been run over by a Tri-Met bus I feel pretty good.
The books coming along but I am slow at doing things plus worried a little about copyright things but will send you what I have in a while. Perhaps next time we vist together. My address is
Friendship Forever A good friend - what a treasure! Iíve had a good friend since the fourth grade (and thatís a considerable piece of time since we are now in our 50s). Joyce and I see each other only occasionally, but when weíre together itís as if we just saw each other yesterday. Being with her is as beautiful as a colorful rainbow, a fresh box of crayons or a cool shower on a hot day - refreshing. One of our favorite things to do is play in the kitchen together. Lots of problems can be solved while youíre chopping and slicing. Sharing a recipe is sharing your life. Are those tears from the onion or from that memory? Does it matter because soon there is only laughter. There is always a sense of understanding, of peace and comfort, of feeling completely at home. Most of all, there is acceptance, no matter what weíve done. There is unconditional love. Always. Friends sharing joy, sorrow, laughter and tears. Through the good - weddings, births and successes; the off-beat - TM, vegetarianism, yoga; the sad - loss of a mother, loss of a child, loss of our youth: we rage on together. We share beauty secrets - after all, we canít let gravity and the years show too much. Thatís how it is when you share time in the kitchen with a friend who will be a friend forever. Your friend Stan
Thanks for the tape and when we meet again or when I get some copies made of what I have written already I promise to get it off to you. IT IS REAL ROUGH. But it is also very brutally truthful. God Bless Stan. PS Therapy is going well and the blood levels are coming down. Sorry I haven't got back to you sooner. Been pretty tired lately. I guess it has to get worse before I'll feel better. Thanks for being a friend. Been working a lot on my pages. Don't forget the plug in. visit at http://www.teleport.com/~whitey and refresh the pages!
Hi Tim just wishing you the best of the Holidays and I hope to one day be finished with this book. I have a trial version of Dragon naturally speaking and trying to get it up into the system off the pages that I did on my word processor. Gods grace Stanley Fafara "Whitey"
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