Doris Day, the legendary singer and actress who recorded chart-topping hits across multiple decades, died at 1 a.m. at her home in California on Monday.
She was 97 years old.
The Doris Day Animal Foundation confirmed in a statement to Us Weekly and other outlets that Day “had been in excellent physical health for her age, until recently contracting a serious case of pneumonia, resulting in her death.”
The Hollywood icon was reportedly surrounded by “a few close friends” at the time of her passing.
The entertainer had just turned 97 years old two months ago.
Born Doris Mary Ann Kappelhoff, the multi-talented star was one of the most famous actresses in the 1950s and 1960s, appearing in movies such as Teacher’s Pet (1958), Pillow Talk (1959) and That Touch of Mink (1962).
She was also known for her contralto singing voice, which she famously showcased in “Whatever Will Be, Will Be (Que Sera, Sera)” from Alfred Hitchcock’s 1956 movie The Man Who Knew Too Much.
Here’s a relatively unknown and impressive fact about Day, too:
She wanted to become a dancer.
However, she was hit by a train and suffered a broken leg at the age of 12.
From there, she began listening to music during her recovery and eventually scored a job singing on a Cincinnati radio station prior to moving to New York.
Late in her career, Day received a number of honorary awards, including:
– The Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award in 1989.
– The Presidential Medal of Freedom from George W. Bush in 2004.
– The Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008.
She never won an Oscar, but was nominated for best actress in 1960 for her role as Jan Morrow in Pillow Talk.
In addition to her amazinf Hollywood career, Day spent a great deal of her time advocating for animal welfare.
“Doris’ wishes were that she have no funeral or memorial service and no grave marker,” the Doris Day Animal Foundation, which the actress founded in 1978, said in Monday’s statement, adding:
“Friends and fans wishing to remember Doris Day, are encouraged to visit www.dorisdayanimalfoundation.org.”
On the personal front, she was married four times:
To Al Jorden from 1941 to 1943… George Weidler from 1946 to 1949… Martin Melcher from 1951 until his death in 1968 … and Barry Comden from 1976 to 1981.
She and Melcher shared son Terry Melcher, a famed music producer who died at age 62 in November 2004.
May Doris Day rest in peace.
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