31/12/2020 08:13 GMT

Dawn Wells, Gilligan's Island's Mary Ann, Dies Aged 82 Due To Covid-19 Complications

The US star was best known for playing Mary Ann in the iconic 1960s sitcom.

US actor Dawn Wells, best known for her performance in the 1960s sitcom Gilligan’s Island, has died at the age of 82.

Dawn died in Los Angeles on Wednesday, after being diagnosed with Covid-19.

Her publicist Harlan Boll said she had died “in no pain as a result of complications due to” coronavirus.

There is so much more to Dawn Wells” than the sitcom character that brought her fame, Harlan added in a statement.

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Dawn Wells pictured in 2019

Dawn was born in Nevada in 1938, originally studying chemistry at university before representing her home state in the 1960 Miss World beauty pageant.

From there, Dawn moved to Hollywood to pursue her career in acting.

Small parts in shows like 77 Sunset Strip, Maverick and Bonanza followed, after which she landed the role of “good girl” Mary Ann Summers in Gilligan’s Island.

The show ran for 98 episodes, eventually coming to an end in 1967, although Dawn would go on to reprise the role of Mary Ann in multiple spin-offs.

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Dawn in character as Mary Ann in 1965

She also served as a producer and appeared in the 2001 docudrama Surviving Gilligan’s Island and wrote the book A Guide To Life: What Would Mary Ann Do? to commemorate the show’s 50th anniversary.

In later years, Dawn would appear in TV shows like Growing Pains, Baywatch and Roseanne.

She also worked as a teacher and motivational speaker, in addition to running the ran the Film Actors Boot Camp for seven years in Idaho.

In 2018, after it was reported Dawn was experiencing financial difficulties due to her health problems, fans raised nearly $200,000 for her.

Dawn is survived by her stepsister Weslee Wells.

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