Nancy Dow Biography

Nancy Dow, an American actress, is best known as the mother of actress Jennifer Aniston and the mother-in-law of Justin Theroux. She had a successful career in television and film, appearing in shows like ‘The Beverly Hillbillies’ and ‘The Wild Wild West’. Dow also wrote a memoir about her relationship with her daughter. Sadly, she passed away on May 25, 2016.

Quick Facts

  • Also Known As: Nancy Maryanne Dow
  • Died At Age: 79
  • Family:
    • Spouse/Ex-: Jack Melick, John Aniston (ex-husbands)
    • Father: Gordon McLean Dow
    • Mother: Louise Grieco
    • Siblings: Jean, Joan, Linda, Martha and Sally (sisters)
    • Children: Jennifer Aniston, John T. Melick
  • Occupation: Actresses
  • Nationality: American
  • Died on: May 25, 2016
  • Place of death: Los Angeles, California, United States
  • Ancestry: British American, Irish American, Italian American
  • Cause of Death: Stroke
  • U.S. State: Connecticut


Nancy Dow began her acting career in 1966, playing the role of Athena in the TV series ‘The Beverly Hillbillies’. The following year, she was offered the role of Tersa in another series called ‘The Wild Wild West’. She also appeared as Jan Wilson in the movie ‘The Ice House’ and in the Canadian movie ‘Pure’ in 2004. Despite having only a few acting projects, Dow’s contributions to both the small and big screen are still remembered today.

Personal Life

Nancy Dow was born on July 22, 1936, in Connecticut, USA. Her parents were Louise Grieco and Gordon McLean Dow. She grew up with her five sisters in New York City. When she was about 12 years old, her mother left the family.

In terms of her love life, Dow was first married to Jack Melick, a pianist-bandleader, and they had a son named John T. Melick III. Dow and Melick divorced in 1961. She later married actor John Aniston and they had a daughter named Jennifer Aniston, who is now a well-known Hollywood actress. Dow and Jennifer had a troubled relationship for nine years but eventually reconciled after Jennifer’s separation from Brad Pitt. Dow suffered a series of strokes in 2011-12, which affected her movements and ability to speak. She was taken to the hospital on May 23, 2016, and passed away two days later at the age of 79.

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