Dodie Levy-Fraser – Ex-Wife Of The Late Michael Landon

Dodie Levy Fraser lived an intriguing life. She was the wife of famous Hollywood actor Michael Landon. They were together for six years, but their time together was well spent. And despite his death, Michael’s …

Real Name:Dorothy Levy Fraser
Birthday:March 16, 1933 - July 5, 1994
Net Worth:$500,000
Occupation:American Actress, Author, Director, Ex-Wife of Michael Landon

Dodie Levy Fraser lived an intriguing life. She was the wife of famous Hollywood actor Michael Landon. They were together for six years, but their time together was well spent. And despite his death, Michael’s legacy still lives.

How much do we know about his ex-wife, Dodie Levy-Fraser? Well, she was an American citizen of a Caucasian ethnic background.

Dodie was a unique celebrity wife for the time. She was a producer, actress, author, and director. Let’s find out more about her life with American Actor Michael Landon.

Who Was Her Ex-husband?

As we said before, Dodie Fraser was married to Michael Landon for six years. Born Eugene Maurice Orowitz in October 1936, Michael was an American actor and filmmaker. He is famous for his roles like Little Joe Cartwright in Bonanza, Charles Ingalls in Little House on the Prairie, and Jonathan Smith in Highway to Heaven.

In a way, Michael was among the biggest stars in Hollywood from the late 1950s to the late 1980s. He appeared on the cover of TV Guide 22 times, which is second only to Lucille Ball.

Born in Forest Hills, Queens, New York City, his father was Jewish, while his mother was Roman Catholic. He was their second child. Michael had an older sister, Evelyn, born in 1933.

When he was four years of age, his family moved to the borough of Collingswood, New Jersey. There, he attended and celebrated his bar mitzvah at Temple Beth Sholom. During his childhood, he was in constant fear of his mother attempting suicide. During one family vacation, she tried to drown herself, but Michael rescued her. Stress from her suicide attempts caused him to battle the childhood problem of bedwetting. The stress was documented in the unauthorized biography, Michael Landon: His Triumph and Tragedy.

Here is a fun fact: during his time at Collingswood High School, Michael was an excellent javelin thrower. He owned the record for the longest throw by a high school participant in the United States in 1954.

Landon began his film career after being noticed by Bob Raison, a local agent. He was the one to suggest changing his surname. Landon selected one from a phone book.

His first appearance was in the television series Telephone Time in 1956. He then had roles in I Was a Teenage Werewolf, Maracaibo, High School Confidential, The Legend of Tom Dooley, and more.

In 1959, when he was 22 years of age, he began his role as Little Joe Cartwright on Bonanza. It was one of the first television series to be broadcast in color. He starred alongside Pernell Roberts, Dan Blocker, and Lorne Greene. Because he received fan mail more than any other cast member, he negotiated with executive producer David Dortort and NBC to write and direct some episodes.

He remains the only member to appear in all 14 seasons of the TV series, alongside Lorne Green andVictor Sen Yung.

After the show was canceled, he went on to portray Charles Ingalls in the pilot of what become a highly successful television series, Little House on the Prairie. The show by NBC was taken from a 1935 book written by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

The show, alongside Michael, was nominated for and won several Emmy Awards and Golden Globe Awards. Then, he went on to appear in another successful show, Highway to Heaven. There, he played a probationary angel whose job was to help people in order to earn his wings.

In April 1991, he started suffering from severe headaches. Three days later, he was diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer. On July 1, at the age of 54, he passed away in Malibu, California. Melissa Gilbert, who acted as his daughter in Little House on the Prairie, said he made her feel extremely safe and was a second father to her.

Quick Bio

Now let’s talk about his former celebrity spouse, Dodie Levy-Fraser. She was older than him, born in March 1933 in New York City.

Dodie Fraser was an American citizen of a Caucasian ethnic background. Dodie is known as an actress, director, author, and producer. But she came to the limelight after her marriage to the famous Hollywood actor.

As the youngest in her family, she grew up with her parents and two older siblings, Mary Levy Ruggraffe and Solomon Isaac Levy. In 1989, she lost her elder sister Mary.

We do not have information about her educational background and early life. We do know she joined theatre and performing classes after primary school. Dodie was somewhat famous in the theater and appeared in different shows.

Yet, her career as an actress was not a spectacular one. After some time, she began writing stories and became a semi-popular writer.

Marriage to Landon

Michael Landon was married three times and fathered nine children. Dodie Levy Fraser was his first wife, whom he married in 1956. They got divorced in 1962. The happy couple had two children together, Mark Fraser Landon and Josh Fraser Landon. Mark was Dodie’s biological son from her first marriage, and they also adopted Josh.

Michael also got married to Marjorie Lynn Noe and had Cheryl Lynn Landon, Leslie Ann Landon, Michael Landon Jr., Shawna Leigh Landon, and Christopher Beau Landon with her. From his third marriage to Cindy Clerico, a makeup artist on Little House on the Prairie, he has Jennifer Rachel Landon and Sean Matthew Landon.

Michael and Dodie exchanged vows to an audience of family and close relatives in March 1956. They were happy with each other and had two children together. Yet, after a while, his career took off. After becoming successful in his acting career, he didn’t care to balance his family life, which led to a divorce.

Dodie was a widow when they met. She had a son from her previous marriage, Mark Fraser Landon. Dodie and Michael also adopted Josh Fraser Landon as an infant.

His burgeoning acting career and long-running roles didn’t allow Michael to handle the marriage. It gradually began to fall. In the early 1960s, he began a relationship with his future second wife, Marjorie Lynn Noe, while he was still married to Dodie. He eventually divorced his first wife in favor of his new wife.

Following the divorce, Fraser married Dr. Peter Lake for her third marriage. Their marriage was kept a closely guarded secret between the two.

In July 1994, Dodie Levy Fraser passed away in her home in Palm Springs, Riverside County, California. She was 61 at the time. There were no genuine reasons for her death.

What Happened To Their Son Mark?

We mentioned Dodie had a son from her first marriage. Her first husband died shortly after their marriage, but they had a son, Mark. He was born in October 1948. Dodie never mentioned her late first husband.

Mark developed a strong passion for acting while growing up with his adoptive father. In 1991, Mark made his television debut in the movie Us, playing a cab driver. The movie was written and directed by Michael. He also appeared in movies like Double Edge and Goodbye America.

Mark Landon was discovered dead at his home in West Hollywood in May 2009, at the age of 60. There was no evidence of his death.

Net Worth

Before she died, Dodie had a net worth of $500,000. That is nothing compared to the net worth of her late husband, Michael, at the time of his death. According to some reports, the Bonanza star had a net worth of $40 million at the time of death.

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