MY SON, BILLY
By Bill Mays, Sr.
Meet Billy Mays. You know, the TV and cable pitchman for Oxiclean, Zorbeez, Mighty Putty, WashMatic, Kaboom! and a host of other products that just made life easier for millions.
Billy’s real story, from his birth in ’58 to his funeral in ’09—the story of the son, husband, father, and friend—is written by Bill Mays Sr., who tells you about the behind-the-scene Billy he loved so much.
Billy’s upbringing was humble, but he was surrounded by a loving family of longtime Pennsylvania residents. His father filled a whole suitcase with memories, mementos, photos, and news clippings that detail Billy’s short life. He wasn’t always the guy with the full beard; he was an infant, a schoolboy, a teenager, and then a young adult who worked his way from pitching products at county fairs and flea markets to the top promoter on the Home Shopping Network and the owner of a custom-built mansion in Odessa, Florida.
Everyone wanted him as a pitchman, and his popularity, voice, and image ended up eclipsing the products he sold. He became a celebrity in his own right, making various appearances including both Jay Leno’s and Conan O’Brien’s Tonight Shows.
Billy was a remarkable person with a level of energy that defies description—or imitation. Give a big thumbs-up
for Billy Mays!