Ronnie Burns, the son of George Burns and Gracie Allen who played himself on his parents' TV show in the 1950s, died Wednesday of cancer at his home in Pacific Palisades, Calif., according to his wife, Janice.
Born in Evanston, Ill., he was adopted when he was 3 months old. He grew up among the elite of Hollywood and the privileged of Beverly Hills, but preferred a low-key life, according to friends and family.
Mr. Burns appeared as himself for several seasons on The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, which aired from 1950 to 1958, and later on The George Burns Show.
He also appeared on a few other shows, including Playhouse 90 and The Honeymooners, but was never comfortable with fame, his wife said. He quit acting in the early 1960s, although he worked behind the cameras with his father in 1964, producing the sitcom Wendy and Me.
In his youth, Mr. Burns was an avid surfer and later enjoyed boat racing and sailing. After leaving show business, he went into real estate investment, using money he had made from acting. In later years, he raised Arabian horses and had a ranch in Santa Ynez, Calif.