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Debbie Reynolds, actress & mother of Carrie Fisher, passes away at age 84

12.29.2016

Debbie Reynolds, star of stage, screen, music and television, passed away yesterday at the age of 84 from an apparent stroke. Her unfortunate passing came just one day after the death of her daughter, Carrie Fisher, who suffered a heart attack on a flight to Los Angeles over the holiday weekend.

Born in El Paso, Texas in 1932 as Mary Frances Reynolds, the starlet’s family moved to Burbank, California when she was seven. At sixteen she won the Miss Burbank beauty contest and was then signed to a contract at Warner Bros. and was given the name “Debbie” by Jack Warner.  She started acting in films immediately, getting roles in films like JUNE BRIDE and THREE LITTLE WORDS (for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe).

However, her star shot into the heavens with a role in SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN with Gene Kelly. After that she would go onto star in a litany of films, including THE UNSINKABLE MOLLY BROWN for which she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Lead Actress. Then in 1969 she had her own weekly television show, THE DEBBIE REYNOLDS SHOW (making her at one point the highest paid woman on television), and even conquered the stage starring in the play IRENE, earning her a Tony nomination.

As her career moved on she owned her own hotel in Las Vegas, appeared in TV shows, and was given the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award in 2015, and just this year was awarded the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the Academy Awards for her years of charitable work.

Yesterday, just one day after the death of her daughter from a heart attack, Reynolds was at the home of her son when she suffered a stroke, reportedly instigated by the emotional stress over her daughter’s passing. She was rushed to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and was announced dead later that afternoon, her last words regarding how she wanted to be with her daughter. Her final film appearance was this year in the documentary BRIGHT LIGHTS: STARRING CARRIE FISHER AND DEBBIE REYNOLDS about the relationship between her and her famous daughter.

I cannot say I’ve seen many of her films outside of RAIN, but one look at her résumé and it’s no wonder the talented star has been beloved for so many decades. Constantly appearing in films, TV and theater productions Reynolds clearly loved to perform, and even managed to give back through charitable works. Over the past year she has received some of the industry’s highest honors, and leaves behind a lifetime of admirable, classic work.  Both her and her daughter Carrie will be sorely missed, and hopefully the two are making each other laugh in a realm far, far away.

Source: BBC

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