2 items from 2013
Former child star was hand-picked by Walt Disney and spoke openly about the degenerative effects of multiple sclerosis
Annette Funicello, who became a child star as a perky, cute-as-a-button Mouseketeer on The Mickey Mouse Club in the 1950s, then teamed up with Frankie Avalon on a string of 1960s fun-in-the-sun movies with names like Beach Blanket Bingo and Bikini Beach, died Monday. She was 70.
She died at Mercy Southwest Hospital in Bakersfield, California, of complications from multiple sclerosis, the Walt Disney Co said.
Funicello stunned fans and friends in 1992 with the announcement about her ailment. Yet she was cheerful and upbeat, grappling with the disease with a courage that contrasted with her lightweight teen image of old.
"She will forever hold a place in our hearts as one of Walt Disney's brightest stars, delighting an entire generation of baby boomers with her jubilant personality and endless talent," said Bob Iger, »
Annette Funicello, the 1950s and '60s-era Mickey Mouse Club Mouseketeer who went on to star in a variety of beach movies with Frankie Avalon, has died from complications related to Multiple Sclerosis. She was 70. Funicello was the biggest star to emerge from the original incarnation of the Mickey Mouse Club television series, which she joined at its inception in 1955. She continued to make movies for Disney into the 1960s, including "The Shaggy Dog," "Babes in Toyland" and "The Monkey's Uncle." Her best-known film work came in a series of beach »
- Steve Pond
2 items from 2013
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