Gone Too Soon (Passed Before 40): Women

by Erich-13 | created - 24 Jan 2013 | updated - 24 Jan 2013 | Public

A list of film and TV personalities who passed away before the age of 40. (This is not to suggest that the death of someone in their 40s or above is NOT an untimely end...I've simply chosen the age of 40 for the purposes of this list, to keep the list comparatively short.)

1. Marilyn Monroe

Actress | Some Like It Hot

Marilyn Monroe was an American actress, comedienne, singer, and model. She became one of the world's most enduring iconic figures and is remembered both for her winsome embodiment of the Hollywood sex symbol and her tragic personal and professional struggles within the film industry. Her life and ...

2. Jayne Mansfield

Actress | The Girl Can't Help It

One of the leading sex symbols of the 1950s and 1960s, film actress Jayne Mansfield was born Vera Jayne Palmer on April 19, 1933 in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, to Vera J. and Herbert W. Palmer. Her parents were well-to-do, with her father a successful attorney in Phillipburg, New Jersey, where Jayne ...

3. Jean Harlow

Actress | Dinner at Eight

Harlean Carpenter, who later became Jean Harlow, was born in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 3, 1911. She was the daughter of a successful dentist and his wife. In 1927, at the age of 16, she ran away from home to marry a young businessman named Charles McGrew, who was 23. The couple pulled up ...

4. Carole Lombard

Actress | My Man Godfrey

Carole Lombard was born Jane Alice Peters in Fort Wayne, Indiana, on October 6, 1908. Her parents divorced in 1916 and her mother took the family on a trip out West. While there they decided to settle down in the Los Angeles area. After being spotted playing baseball in the street with the ...

5. Brittany Murphy

Actress | Just Married

Brittany Murphy was born Brittany Anne Bertolotti on November 10, 1977 in Atlanta, Georgia, to Sharon Kathleen Murphy and Angelo Joseph Bertolotti. Her father's ancestry is Italian, and her mother is of Irish and Slovak descent. Her father moved the family back to Edison, New Jersey as a native New...

6. Jeanne Eagels

Actress | The Letter

Jeanne Eagels, one of the most intriguing stars of late silent films and the early talkies, was born Amelia Jean Eagles on June 26, 1890 in Kansas City, Missouri, to Edward and Julia Sullivan Eagles. Young Jean was part of an impoverished family of eight, with three brothers and two sisters. She ...

7. Susan Peters

Actress | Random Harvest

War-era MGM had a lovely, luminous star in the making with Susan Peters. She possessed a creative talent and innate sensitivity that would surely have reigned as a leading Hollywood player for years to come had not a tragic and cruel twist of fate taken everything away from her.

She was born Suzanne...

8. Lupe Velez

Actress | The Girl from Mexico

Lupe Velez was born on July 18, 1908, in San Luis de Potosi, Mexico, as Maria Guadalupe Villalobos Velez. She was sent to Texas at the age of 13 to live in a convent. She later admitted that she wasn't much of a student because she was so rambunctious. She had planned to become a champion ...

9. Janie Marèse

Actress | La chienne

Janie Marèse was born on May 23, 1908 in Chartres, Eure-et-Loir, France. She was an actress, known for La Chienne (1931), Mam'zelle Nitouche (1931) and Amours viennoises (1931). She died on August 14, 1931 in Sainte-Maxime, Var, France.

10. Sharon Tate

Actress | Valley of the Dolls

Sharon's early life was one of constant moving as her father served in the military. When she lived in Italy, she was voted "Homecoming Queen" of her high school. After being an extra in a few Italian films, Sharon headed to Hollywood where she would again start as an extra. Her first big break ...

11. Rebecca Schaeffer

Actress | Radio Days

Rebecca began modeling at the age of 16, going off to New York on her own to begin her career. Four months later, she found herself in Japan, modeling. Eventually, she landed a co-starring role on My Sister Sam (1986), for which she is now best known. In 1989 she also became a spokesperson for ...

12. Dorothy Stratten

Actress | Galaxina

Dorothy Stratten's story was brief, glorious and tragic. She was born Dorothy Ruth Hoogstraten on February 28, 1960 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. She grew up in a rough neighborhood in Vancouver, but kept out of trouble and went through the motions of school. While not a beauty as a child...

13. Claudia Jennings

Actress | The Unholy Rollers

Born Mary Eileen "Mimi" Chesterton (nicknamed Mimi by her friends and family) in St. Paul, Minnesota, titian beauty Claudia Jennings was raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In 1966, she moved to Evanston, Illinois, the first suburb north of Chicago just south of the Wisconsin state line, where she ...

14. Anna Nicole Smith

Actress | Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult

Anna Nicole Smith was born on November 28, 1967 in Houston, Texas, USA as Vickie Lynn Hogan. She is known for her work on Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult (1994), Skyscraper (1996) and Be Cool (2005). She was married to J. Howard Marshall II and Billy Smith. She died on February 8, 2007 in ...

15. Amy Winehouse

Soundtrack | Amy

Amy Winehouse was a five-time Grammy Award-winning English singer-songwriter known for such hits as 'Rehab' and 'You Know I'm No Good' among her other works.

She was born Amy Jade Winehouse, on September 14, 1983, in Enfield, London, England to a Jewish family with Russian ancestry on her mother's ...

16. Janis Joplin

Soundtrack | Watchmen

Janis Lyn Joplin was born at St. Mary's Hospital in the oil-refining town of Port Arthur, Texas, near the border with Louisiana. Her father was a cannery worker and her mother was a registrar for a business college. As an overweight teenager, she was a folk-music devotee (especially Odetta, ...

17. Leslie Carter

Soundtrack | Shrek

Leslie Barbara Carter was born on June 6, 1986, in Tampa, Florida, into the family of Robert Gene Carter (aka Robert Carter) and his wife Jane Elizabeth Carter (née Spaulding) and become the third of their five children. Her parents were divorced in 2003 after more than 20 years of marriage. Leslie...

18. Françoise Dorléac

Actress | L'homme de Rio

The radiant Francoise Dorleac is better remembered today as the elder, ill-fated sister of French film star Catherine Deneuve. The Paris-born actress, however, was actually the first to become a star and had quite a formidable career of her own in the 1960s until it was cut short. Born into a ...

19. Pascale Ogier

Actress | Les nuits de la pleine lune

Pascale Ogier was born on October 26, 1958 in Paris, France as Pascale Nicolas. She was an actress and writer, known for Les nuits de la pleine lune (1984), Le Pont du Nord (1981) and Perceval le Gallois (1978). She died on October 25, 1984 in Paris.

20. Pauline Lafont

Actress | Le petit docteur

Pauline Lafont was born on April 6, 1963 in Nîmes, Gard, France as Pauline Aïda Simone Medveczky. She was an actress, known for Le petit docteur (1986), Papy fait de la résistance (1983) and I Hate Actors (1986). She died on August 11, 1988 in Gabriac, Lozère, France.

21. Soledad Miranda

Actress | Vampyros Lesbos

Soledad Miranda was a Spanish actress who appeared in many films in the 1960s. Her remarkable beauty and her tragic untimely death make her story the stuff of legend. She was born on July 9, 1943 in Seville, Spain. She started her career when only eight years old as a flamenco dancer and singer. ...

22. Roxanne Kernohan

Actress | Tango & Cash

Stunningly lovely, vibrant and extremely well-built statuesque blonde beauty Roxanne Kernohan greatly enlivened a handful of hugely enjoyable late 80s horror, science fiction and exploitation pictures with her exceptionally attractive looks, bubbly, appealing and vivacious personality, and ...

23. Kerry McGregor

Actress | The Book Group

Born in Pumpherston, West Lothian, Scotland, Kerry McGregor had an extraordinary life of triumph over tragedy with so many people describing her attitude as an inspiration to us all. Kerry's first set back was the loss of her father George, who died in a road traffic accident when she was just 5 ...

24. Sammi Kane Kraft

Actress | Bad News Bears

Sammi Kane Kraft was born on April 2, 1992 in Livingston, New Jersey, USA. She was an actress, known for Bad News Bears (2005) and Today (1952). She died on October 11, 2012 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

25. Guylaine St-Onge

Actress | Highwaymen

Guylaine St-Onge was born in 1965 in St.-Eustache, Québec, Canada. She was an actress, known for Highwaymen (2004), Angel Eyes (2001) and Code Name: Eternity (1999). She was married to David Nerman. She died on March 3, 2005 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

26. Mia Amber Davis

Actress | Road Trip

Mia Amber Davis was born on July 25, 1975 in New York City, New York, USA. She is known for her work on Road Trip (2000), Girl Crazy (2007) and Holla If I Kill You (2003). She was married to Mike Yard. She died on May 10, 2011 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

27. Natina Reed

Actress | Bring It On

Natina Reed was born on October 28, 1980 in New York City, New York, USA as Natina Tiawana Reed. She was an actress, known for Bring It On (2000), Honey (2003) and V.I.P. (1998). She died on October 26, 2012 in Duluth, Georgia, USA.

28. Shana Dowdeswell

Actress | The Big Wedding

Shana Elizabeth Dowdeswell (died December 12, 2012) was born on April 1, 1989 in Harare, Zimbabwe. She then moved to New York City where she attended City and Country School, PS 3, and finally PPAS High School. She also began a career as an actress, beginning at age eight. Over the years, she ...

29. Shayne Kohout

Actress | Life as We Know It

Shayne Kohout was born on June 9, 1976 in Midland, Texas, USA as Shayne Ann Kohout. She is known for her work on Life as We Know It (2010), Mandie and the Secret Tunnel (2009) and Mandie and the Cherokee Treasure (2010). She died on May 14, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

30. Maria Kwiatkowsky

Actress | En garde

Maria Kwiatkowsky was born on April 23, 1985 in Berlin, Germany. She was an actress, known for En garde (2004), Liebe Amelie (2005) and Die Er­fin­dung der Liebe (2013). She died on July 4, 2011 in Berlin.

31. Julie Patzwald

Actress | Disturbing Behavior

Julie Patzwald was born on March 11, 1980 in British Columbia, Canada. She was an actress, known for Disturbing Behavior (1998), The Guard (2008) and John Tucker Must Die (2006). She died in April 2012 in Vancouver, British Columbia.

32. Courtney Fine

Actress | Cult

Courtney Felicia Fine was born on April 29, 1977 in Tucson, Arizona. The daughter of Dr. Harold Alan Fine and Harriet Sandra Fine, she was also the younger sister of brother Randall Adam Fine. Courtney moved with her family to Lexington, Kentucky shortly after she was born. An exceptional student ...

33. Gia McGinley

Actress | Empathy

Passed tragically from this life during childbirth along with her precious infant son Samson James Romanelli on September 30, 2011. She is the cherished wife of Charlie Romanelli, loving mother of Nathaniel Scott Romanelli and Charles Thompson Romanelli, devoted daughter of Madeline (Mazzola) ...

34. Isabelle Caro

Actress | Les aventures extraordinaires d'Adèle Blanc-Sec

Isabelle Caro was born on September 12, 1982 in Marseille, France. She was an actress, known for Les aventures extraordinaires d'Adèle Blanc-Sec (2010), Corps de dame (2009) and Jessica Simpson: The Price of Beauty (2010). She died on November 17, 2010 in France.

35. Chane't Johnson

Actress | The Ring Two

Chane't Johnson was born A'Drewana Chane't Johnson in Dallas, Texas. Graduating with honors from Duncanville High School, Chane't was awarded a talent scholarship to Southern Methodist University in Dallas where she earned her BFA in Theatre Arts, and worked multiple seasons with the Shakespeare ...

36. Jennifer Lyon

Actress | Long Pig

Jennifer Lyon was born on February 27, 1972 in Boulder City, Nevada, USA. She was an actress, known for Long Pig (2008), Daddy Day Camp (2007) and Cannibal Feast (2011). She died on January 19, 2010 in Sublimity, Oregon, USA.

37. Lucy Gordon

Actress | Spider-Man 3

Lucy Gordon was born on May 22, 1980 in Oxford, Oxfordshire, England. She was an actress, known for Spider-Man 3 (2007), Serendipity (2001) and The Four Feathers (2002). She died on May 20, 2009 in Paris, Île-de-France, France.

38. Felicia Tang

Actress | Hotel Decadence

Felicia Tang was born on October 22, 1977 in Singapore as Felicia Lee. She was an actress. She died on September 11, 2009 in Monrovia, California, USA.

39. Anastasia Summers

Actress | America's Most Wanted

Anastasia hails from a show business family, dating back to Hollywood's beginning...

Her great-uncle Mel was a a leading PR man for stars and studios alike from the 1920s-40s, helping to promote the careers of upcoming legends such as Greta Garbo, Gloria Swanson, Clark Gable, Mae West, Douglas ...

40. Lorissa McComas

Actress | The Bare Wench Project

Lorissa McComas was born on November 26, 1970 in Columbus, Ohio, USA as Lorissa Deanna McComas. She is known for her work on The Bare Wench Project (2000), Piranha (1995) and Droid Gunner (1995). She died on November 3, 2009 in Waverly, Virginia, USA.

41. Julianna Redding

Actress | Kathy T Gives Good Hoover

Julianna Redding was born on October 25, 1986 in Tucson, Arizona, USA as Juliana Maureen Redding. She was an actress, known for Kathy T (2005). She died on March 16, 2008 in Santa Monica, California, USA.

42. Natasha Collins

Actress | The 10th Kingdom

Natasha Collins was born on July 7, 1976 in Luton, Bedfordshire, England as Natasha Louise Collins. She was an actress, known for The 10th Kingdom (2000), See It Saw It (1999) and ChuckleVision (1987). She died on January 3, 2008 in St John's Wood, London, England.

43. Jeannie Millar

Actress | Black Scorpion

Jeannie Millar was born on August 11, 1974 in Thailand as Jeannie Mae Millar. She was an actress, known for Black Scorpion (2001), Black Scorpion II: Aftershock (1996) and Facade (1999). She died on May 29, 2008 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

44. Tiffany Sloan

Actress | Married with Children

Gorgeously buxom and shapely blonde knockout Tiffany Marie Sloan was born on May 29, 1973 in Orange County, California. Tiffany was the Playmate of the Month in the October, 1992 issue of "Playboy." She holds the distinction of being one of a handful of Playmates to have her own video centerfold ...

45. Rana Fisher

Actress | Cattle Call

Rana Fisher was born on April 18, 1972 in Houston, Texas, USA as Rana Elaine Fisher. She was an actress, known for Cattle Call (2006), Pomegranate (2005) and Classic Albums (1997). She died on August 10, 2008 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

46. Jeana Rhinerson

Actress | Me Myself and Us TV

Born in Evansville, Indiana. Has studied comedy at Second City. Performed in Hollywood for one season with sketch comedy troupe, Tomboys in Fishnets. This six person comedy troupe performed live for the Comedy Central Stage and was touted by local papers as 'the talk of Tinseltown'. Graduated from ...