LookingBack March 14

Those angelic faces from television and movies that were child stars do grow up. Here is a look at some of the children from the past (in no particular order) and what turns their lives have taken.

Sheila James (b. 1941)

* Zelda Gilroy, "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis"

* Graduated from Harvard Law School, class of 1978

* Reprised her Zelda role in the 1988 TV movie, "Bring Me the Head of Dobie Gillis"

* Served in the California General Assembly 1995-2001.

* Elected to the California Senate in 2001.

* Was the first openly gay or lesbian person to win a seat in the California Legislature.

* Has filed a "statement of intent" to run for California's secretary of state in this year's elections.

Linda Whelchel (b. 1963)

* Blair Warner, "The Facts of Life"

* Made her television debut in 1977 at age 14 on "The New Mickey Mouse Club".

* Married Steven Cauble within months of the final episode of "The Facts of Life" in 1988 and is still married.

* Mother of three -- all homeschooled.

* Is a trained ventriloquist and licensed pilot.

* Released a book about child rearing in June 2000.

* Currently assists her husband with his work as an associate pastor in Van Nuys, Calif.

Susan Olsen (b. 1961)

* Cindy Brady, "The Brady Bunch"

* Married Steve Ventimiglia in 1988; divorced in 1990.

* Married Mitch Markwell in 1995; divorced (with one son ) in 2004.

* Worked as a graphic designer for 10 years.

* Had surgery following "The Brady Bunch" to repair her lisp.

* Launched a coffee table book in 2009 -- a satirical look back at the Bradys' 1975-77 variety show that was named to TV Guide's top five "Worst Shows of All-Time."

Sara Gilbert (b. 1975)

* Darlene on "Roseanne"

* Is the half-sister of "Little House on the Prairie" star Melissa Gilbert.

* Graduated with honors from Yale in 1997.

* Has two children (via sperm donor) with life partner (since 2002) Allison Adler.

* Active in PETA, the Pediatric Aids Foundation and Meals on Wheels.

* Continues to act. Watch for her on television's "Big Bang Theory" as Leslie Winkle.

Billy Mumy (b. 1954)

* Will Robinson on "Lost in Space"; 84 episodes in 1965-68.

* Was the original choice for Eddie Munster, but his parents disapproved of the makeup he would be required to wear.

* While Mumy can be seen in the 2002 "Twilight Zone" TV show, he was seen in episodes of the original program even before "Lost in Space."

* A lifelong friend of Jimmy Stewart, with whom he starred in the 1965 movie "Dear Bridgitte." Stewart's wife, Gloria, was Billy's Sunday school teacher at one time.

* It is the voice of Billy Mumy that has narrated Animal Planet's "Animal Icons" and at least 50 episodes of A&E's "Biography" series.

Linda Blair (b. 1959)

* Beginning at the age of six, Linda Blair appeared as both a model and in film. By the time she was 12, Blair had appeared in 75 commercials and hundreds of magazines and catalogs. When she was just 14, it was her role in "The Exorcist" that made her famous ... she was chosen out of 600 applicants.

* After the role of the possessed child Regan, Blair played the role of a rape victim, a child alcoholic and an abused child in a number of films.

* As a young adult, Blair used drugs and suffered through a series of unsteady relationships, but seemed to find her way before damaging her career too much.

* Blair has never married (but did once date Rick Springfield).

* Today, Blair operates the Linda Blair WorldHeart Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of abused, abandoned and neglected animals from the streets of Los Angeles.

Peter Billingsley (b. 1971)

* Before he was Ralphie in the 1983 movie "A Christmas Story," Billingsley had starred in a total of 120 television ads.

* After his extreme success as the kid with the Red Rider Rifle, Billingsley continued to act through the 1980s and was seen on the popular show "Who's the Boss?"

* After the early 1990s, Billingsley ventured behind the scenes and has done some writing, acting, producing and directing, all of which he is still involved with.

Jay North (b. 1951)

* The little boy that brought "Dennis the Menace" to life had a difficult life during those days of stardom. He reports abuse, particularly by an aunt, during that time.

* After his starring role as Dennis, there were appearances on "The Lucy Show," "Dinah Shore," "My Three Sons" and others.

* One last stint in showbiz featured North as the voice of Bamm-Bamm Flinestone.

* Post-Hollywood, North worked as a prison guard in Florida and shared a last meal with death-row inmate Bernard Bolander.

* In 2009, North was working as a correction officer in Lake Butler, Fla.

Dana Plato (1964-1999)

* Although she had appeared in some films, it was the role of Kimberly Drummond in "Diff'rent Strokes" that made her popular. She was 14 years old.

* There were problems on the set and Plato later admitted she was drinking and using drugs as the show was being filmed. In 1984, Plato was let go after getting pregnant.

* Plato had a hard time finding work and appeared in some B-movies and soft porn.

* In 1991, Plato was arrested for robbing a video store but was placed on probation. A year later, she was arrested for forging a prescription for Valium.

* In 1999, Plato did an interview with Howard Stern and stated that she hoped to revive her acting career. A few days later, she was dead from an overdose of drugs. She was 34.

A few more

* Melissa Sue Anderson -- Mary Ingalls on "Little House on the Prairie" -- lives in California with her husband and children and considers herself a stay-at-home mom.

* Lisa Loring -- Wednesday Addams on "The Addams Family" -- is the ex-wife of a porn star and was last known to be doing public relations work for a hotel chain.

* Zachary Ty Bryan -- Brad Taylor on "Home Improvement" -- is still active in film and television and owns his own bar, Big Wangs.