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Biography

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Overview (4)

Date of Birth 6 November 1967Eugene, Oregon, USA
Date of Death 18 July 1989Los Angeles, California, USA  (homicide by gunshot)
Birth NameRebecca Lucile Schaeffer
Height 5' 7" (1.7 m)

Mini Bio (1)

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 there. Eventually, she landed her role on My Sister Sam (1986), for which she is best known. In 1989, she became a spokesperson for Thursday's Child, a charity for at-risk teens. In April of that same year, having missed a signing due to filming, she reluctantly went to a girl's shelter to sign autographs. "No one will recognize me", she insisted, "or want my autograph," but as it turned out all of them did. In fact, the girls were so in awe that they invited her to the Renaissance Fair in May. Rebecca accepted, though only two months later, she lay dead on the pavement in front of her new apartment in Hollywood, having been shot to death by a paranoid schizophrenic man around her age, who came to her apartment disguised as a flower delivery man with a gun, most likely to save her from whatever delusions he had. Unfortunately, after signing an autograph for him twenty minutes earlier, she abruptly told him she was busy, he, in a fit of irrational anger, took the gun from the brown bag where he had carried it and shot her once in the chest, the bullet directly hitting her heart. Rebecca screamed out, "Why?" then hit the walkway and, a few moments later, died on the scene. The killer fled, aghast at his own act and strode onto the freeway, walking blindly, hoping to be hit and killed by some car or truck. He was subsequently arrested and plea-bargained for a life sentence without the possibility of parole with a then young assistant district attorney named Marcia Clark, who later became famous for her failed attempt to convict O.J. Simpson of murder. There was never any trial in the Rebecca Schaeffer case. Rebecca loved Japan and space exploration. She had a cat named Katherine (after Katharine Hepburn) and possessed quite a bit of intelligence and erudition for someone who had not completed school.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Minerva Breanne Meybridge

Trivia (13)

Shot to death in Los Angeles, California at age 21. Her murderer, Robert John Bardo, was sentenced to life in prison.
Interred at Ahavai Sholom Cemetery in Portland, Oregon.
Her stalking/murder shed light on the horrors that celebrities often face with deranged fans turned stalkers. Since her stalker was able to find out so much personal information about her, including her home address from DMV records, laws have been established to protect celebrities' private information.
As with John Lennon's killer Mark David Chapman before him, Bardo, was found to have in his possession a copy of J.D. Salinger's "Catcher in the Rye" at the time of his arrest.
Was dating Brad Silberling at the time of her death.
Three years before the murder, Robert Bardo began writing letters to Schaeffer.
Bardo also attempted to meet singers Debbie Gibson and Tiffany, but says he was most obsessed with Schaeffer. He once tried to sneak on to the studio lot to give her a stuffed teddy bear.
She was scheduled to audition for Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather: Part III (1990) the morning she was murdered.
Lived with costar Pam Dawber and Dawber's actor husband Mark Harmon in Los Angeles after landing the role of Patti Russell on My Sister Sam (1986).
The movie Moonlight Mile (2002), written and directed by Brad Silberling, has taken the story from his own experiences as her former boyfriend.
Her murder helped lead to the classification of stalking as a felony in California. The law has since provided recourse for such celebrities as Madonna, Jeri Ryan and David Letterman.
Her killer was dressed as a flower delivery man when she was fatally shot once in the heart at the downstairs doorway of her apartment building.
Episode MacGyver: The Gun (1990) of the TV Series MacGyver (1985) was produced in reaction to her murder.

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