|Portrayed by:||Lyle Sudrow (1948-1959) |
Ed Bryce (1959-1963, 1965-1969, 1977-1978
Eugene Smith (1964)
|Duration:||1948–1969, 1977–1978, 1983|
|First appearance:||September 27, 1948|
|Last appearance:||November 10, 1983|
|Created by:||Irna Phillips|
|Full name:||William Edward Bauer Sr.|
|Other names:||William Morey (alias) |
|Died:||August 8, 1983|
|Cause of death:||Pushed out a window by Eli Simms|
|Occupation:||Clerk in a drug store|
William "Bill" Bauer Sr. was a fictional character on the CBS daytime soap opera Guiding Light.
- Lyle Sudrow (09/1948-07/1959)
- Ed Bryce (11/1959-09/1963, 09/1965-07/1969, 08/1977-03/1978, 08/1983 & 11/1983)
- Eugene Smith (1964)
- Presumed deceased July 14, 1969 to September 3, 1977
Good-natured Bill Bauer was a drug store clerk when he married his childhood sweetheart, Bert Miller. After marrying on December 9th, 1949, the pair moved in with Bert's parents. Bert came from an upper middle class family and felt that Bill could do better financially and pushed him to get a better job and move into their own house. With Bert's help, Bill landed a plum job at his brother-in-law, Ted White's, advertising company. Unfortunately, Bill wasn't happy in this affluent world and soon began drinking to cope. Soon his drinking got the better of him and he lost his job. Forced to accept a slew of menial jobs and, upset with Bert's constant nagging about money, Bill slipped deeper and deeper into alcoholism and had an affair with a singer named Gloria LaRue. A former alcoholic herself, Gloria was eventually able to help Bill overcome his drinking problem and gave him the strength to ask Bert for a divorce in 1951. However, Bert refused to let go of the husband she loved and then later found out that she was pregnant. When he discovered she was pregnant, Bill agreed to try to save their marriage. Gloria briefly fell off the wagon as a result, and show business manager Sid Harper restored her confidence by launching her in a promising new radio and television career, of which Bill, who was now back in advertising, was a part. Before long, Gloria and Sid were married and the Bauers, with a baby on the way, were a family once again. Unfortunately with Bill working with Sid, Gloria would not remain out of his life.
In 1952, Charlotte and Ray Brandon had moved to New York and rented their L.A. home to Bert and Bill, who soon celebrated the birth of a baby boy named Michael. Later, Bert read in the newspaper of a development that Bill had withheld from her: Bill had been instrumental in landing Gloria a television contract! Both Bert and Sid smoldered as they watched Gloria become emotionally dependent on Bill, performing at her best whenever he watched her adoringly from the wings. Bert was relieved when Gloria developed vocal problems, abandoned her new show and moved with Sid to New York. Unfortunately Sid replaced Gloria with Kathy Roberts Lang's greedy roommate, Alice Graham, whom Sid had once represented -- not to mention taken to bed. Soon the greedy Alice began filming commercials in violation of her exclusive contract. When Bill threatened to fire Alice, she coolly told him everything about Kathy and Bob Lang's accident and threatened to reveal to the world that Kathy was in the car if Bill axed her. Cornered, Bill kept Alice on but told Bert and his father that Alice had blackmailed him and the Bauers could only ache for Kathy.
Later, hard times came when Bill's capricious boss fired him for no reason. Bill formed a new public relations company with a partner, only to lose his shirt and go back to pounding the pavement. Unbeknownst to Bill, Bert received a letter from their landlords, the Brandons, announcing their intention to sell the house. Behind Bill's back, Bert convinced a reluctant Meta to loan her the money to buy it. Meta only went along with Bert's scheme because she shared Bert's concern that Bill was already under enough pressure without having to worry about keeping a roof over their heads. Unfortunately, when Bill suggested that they move to another area where his business prospects looked better, Bert was forced to tell her husband that his sister was now technically their landlady. Stung by this revelation, and hopeless about finding work, Bill went back to the bottle. For months, he experienced the highs and lows of an alcoholic as he shared delusions of grandeur with the bartender at Blue Moon Lounge, only to feel shame and self-loathing the next day. Papa tried to bring Bill around gently, but Bert gave Bill a firm ultimatum: the bottle or his family. She went so far as to consider divorce until Bill battled his addiction to alcohol at Cedars Hospital, where Kathy's husband, Dr. Dick Grant, counseled and supported him. Enter Gloria LaRue Harper one more time, now a partner with her husband Sid in a talent agency, Gloria bolstered Bill's confidence when she offered him a job in New York. Bert was not happy about Gloria's reappearance in Bill's life, not to mention the fact that Bill would be working 3,000 miles away. However, Bert was secure in the belief that Bill had finally straightened out and agreed to stick by him. He was still Bert's husband and the father of her child, and she loved him. For all of Bert's idiosyncrasies -- her nagging, her social climbing, her opinionated stubbornness -- she remained devoted to her family.
On Bill's part, in 1954, with saving up enough money, and Dick's father, Richard helping getting Bill a job doing advertising for his company, Acme Construction -- Bill was able to give up the commute back and forth to New York. Unfortunately, Mike started acting out in the absence of his father. Though Bert wanted to consult a child psychologist, Bill's father, Papa, scoffed and said that all the boy needed was friendship. Despite Bert's best efforts, Mike continued to act out and when Bill returned, Mike insisted that he had no daddy. Realizing that Bert's discipline wasn't working, Bill decided to take Mike on a trip so they could "find your missing daddy." There in their messy hotel room, the pair bonded and from that point on they became good buddies with Bill promising never to leave again. Not long after, on New Year's Eve 1954, the Bauers celebrated the birth of another son, Billy (Ed). Though delighted to have a little brother, a six-year-old Mike nonetheless started to feel neglected. Complicating matters was Bert's mother, Elsie, who constantly doted on Billy and ignored Mike. Feeling unwanted, Mike ran away, in 1956, but luckily was found with the help of local sketch artist, Marie Wallace. Feeling guilty, Elsie apologized to Mike and moved out of the Bauer home. Unfortunately, the Bauer marriage was still strained due to Bert's demanding nature. She had also developed the bad habit of interfering in Mike's love life and ignoring Bill. Finally, Mike got so disgusted by his mother's interference that he left to work in Venezuela.￼
In 1962, suffering from a virus, Bert visited her friend, Dr. Paul Fletcher. Shocked when he learned she hadn't had an exam in 14 years, Paul ordered up a complete physical for Bert, including a Pap Smear. Dr. Fletcher's advice paid off for Bert since it detected her in the early stages of uterine cancer! Happily the cancer was spotted early enough to be corrected with surgery. It also brought Mike's return to the family fold when his father asked that he come home to support Bert. Mike, who was studying law, got a job with attorney George Hayes. It was while working for Hayes that Mike met secretary Julie Conrad and liked the way she looked. Julie ultimately became pregnant. Coerced by Bert, Mike married Julie who, in 1963, gave birth to a daughter, Hope. Making matters worse was Bert, who neglected Bill and obsessed over her new granddaughter.￼
In late 1965, Bill accepted a transfer to Springfield, Illinois. By this time, Bill was growing more and more tired of Bert's domineering nature and neglect and soon found himself forming a deep friendship and having an affair with his kind-hearted secretary, Maggie Scott. Maggie was a lovely and dedicated assistant who was a divorcee in her 30s who had singlehandedly raised her daughter, Peggy, now fifteen years old. Although originally Maggie had a loyal suitor in Jason Webber, a successful airline executive, she repeatedly turned down his marriage proposals in order to devote her time to Peggy. Eventually, Jason gave up on her, and Maggie began confiding to Bill the details of her difficult life, which included a criminal husband who ran out on her. In 1966, Maggie's wayward husband, Ben Scott, returned. His criminal days behind him, Ben bought a restaurant and told Maggie he wanted to reconcile.
Meanwhile, in the Bauer household, Bert and Bill's marriage was more tenuous than it had been in years. Taking no responsibility for her autocratic ways, Bert constantly sniped at Bill for taking Mike's side against her. Bert was hopeful about improving the family situation when their youngest son, Billy, joined them in Springfield after graduating from medical school, but it soon became evident that the Bauers' cheerful, uncomplicated son had changed into a driven young man, The stage was now set for a most trying period in the Bauers' lives. Papa Bauer overheard Bill and Maggie discussing their relationship and warned Maggie not to destroy the family. Bert witnessed Bill and Maggie holding hands, then slipped away unnoticed. This marked the beginning of Bert Bauer's transformation into a mature, caring woman of substance. Taking responsibility for having driven Bill away, Bert made herself more attractive and started paying attention to her husband. The situation might have righted itself more easily had Ben Scott not discovered Bill and Maggie's affair. Later, while they were out driving, Ben confronted Maggie and the car crashed. An injured Ben was rushed to Cedars, where Ed examined him. In his delirium, Ben rambled on about Bill and Maggie's affair in front of Ed. Sickened by this revelation, Ed bitterly confronted his father and demanded that he confess the affair to Bert. What neither Bill nor Ed realized, of course, was that Bert already knew. Bert walked in on the argument and to Ed's surprise, lambasted him for his disrespect and lack of compassion towards his father! Touched by Bert's display of love and loyalty, Bill showed her more tenderness than he had in a long time. However, Bill still yearned for Maggie (who was forced to marry her ex-husband) and knowing that he'd lost Ed's respect, started drinking again in 1967 after he let a business associate talk him into having a few drinks to bolster his spirits. Fighting to regain control, Bill pleaded for Ed's love and forgiveness, but Ed could only respond with lacerating verbal attacks that shattered Bill and infuriated Bert. With chilling detachment, Ed urged Bert to leave Bill in hopes that he would hit rock bottom and get off the bottle.￼
Bert remained committed to her husband and blamed Ed for driving Bill to drink when he needed his son's love the most. During one of Bill's most acute alcoholic stupors, he mistook Peggy for Maggie and revealed their past affair to the confused teenager. Peggy confronted Maggie and then made plans to elope with Johnny Fletcher, who was fed up with his own sad family situation. Their plan was foiled, however, when Peggy was injured in a car accident. Maggie blamed Bill for her daughter's brush with death, and Bill couldn't argue with her. Sensing that he was about to be fired, Bill quit his job and looked for new employment...and more importantly, he stopped drinking. In time, he was able to put his marriage together and repair the rift between him and Ed. After Maggie tragically died in March 1968, while being operated on by Ed, Bill apologized to Peggy for the pain he caused her and he and Bert took her into their home. Unfortunately, Bert was now very preoccupied with Ed's disastrous marriage to Leslie Jackson! Not able to handle the stress of building his medical career, Ed started drinking and beating his wife. It was at this time that Mike and Hope arrived in Springfield. Though happy to see Mike, Bert was unnerved to see his closeness to Leslie and accused them of having an affair! Before leaving town on a business trip, Bill warned Bert to lay off Mike for Hope's sake. Sadly, the Bauers then heard news that the plane went down. Bill Bauer was dead.
Or everyone thought. Ten years after Bill's plane went down a man named Bill Morey started paying hospital visits to a patient named Hillary Kincaid, his stepdaughter. Nervous about being seen in Springfield, Bill watched from the shadows as Mike Bauer was named Man of the Year. Finally Bill Morey's connection to the Bauers was discovered: Bill Morey WAS Bill Bauer! Discovered, Bill told a startling tale. Almost twenty years prior, he had an affair with a woman named Simone and they conceived a child. To hide the fact that she had a child out of wedlock, Simone quickly married a man named Victor Kincaid and then gave birth to a baby girl, Hillary. Years later, Bill found himself on a plane heading toward Alaska for a business trip. Unnerved by Bert's interference in their sons' lives, Bill decided to get off the plane at Vancouver and look up Simone. Later, he learned that the plane he was to be on crashed! Shaken that his family believed him to be dead and feeling guilty for the reason that he wasn't, he fell off the wagon again! This time, Simone found him and they resumed their affair. Now going by the name Bill Morey, he was disturbed to know that Victor was an abusive husband and father, and the two got into a violent argument that resulted in Victor's death. Bill then moved in with Simone and told the children that they had married.
Now back in Springfield, Bill not only had to deal with the disappointment of all his children, but was on trial for the murder of Victor Kincaid. Luckily,Mike successfully proved that Kincaid's death was an accident and Bill was set free. After repairing his relationship (again) with Ed, Bill left for Chicago to be with Simone only to have her leave him. Years later, in 1983, Bill learned that Nola Reardon was investigating the death of a female friend who died years ago named Annie Simms. After doing some snooping around in Nola's motel room, Bill spotted a picture of Annabelle Simms and fell off the wagon again. Soon after the investigation began, Springfield received word that Bill Bauer fell out of a window to his death. Though initially it was assumed that his death was an accident, later it was suspected that he was actually murdered by Eli Simms, the jealous husband of Annie Simms, and the father of Annabelle Simms who murdered his wife since he was convinced that Anne had had an affair with Bill.