Doris Day Dead: Calamity Jane Star Dies, Aged 97

The sad news was announced on Monday afternoon.

Doris Day has died at the age of 97, her charitable foundation has announced.

The actress died at her home in Carmel Valley, California, where she was surrounded by close friends.

Confirming news of her death on Monday, the Doris Day Animal Foundation said she “had been in excellent physical health for her age, until recently contracting a serious case of pneumonia”.

Doris Day was one of the Hollywood greats
Doris Day was one of the Hollywood greats
Bettmann via Getty Images

Doris’ breakthrough role came in 1948, when she was persuaded to audition for the female lead role in Romance on the High Seas.

From there, she became one of the screen’s most popular leading ladies and the world’s biggest box-office star from 1960 to 1964.

Arguably though, her most remembered role was in 1953′s Calamity Jane.

She went on to co-star with Clark Gable in Teacher’s Pet, before sparring with her frequent leading man Rock Hudson in a series of successful comedies, including Pillow Talk and Lover Come Back.

Her other credits included Bringing Up Baby and That Touch Of Mink – in which she was paired with Cary Grant – while The Thrill of It All and Move Over, Darling saw her sharing the screen with James Garner.

Her last film was With Six You Get Eggroll, a 1968 comedy about a widow and a widower and the problems they have when blending their families.

Doris was also a hugely successful music star, making more than 650 recordings for her Columbia Records label during her three-decade career as a singer.

Her first musical hit was the 1945 smash Sentimental Journey, when she was barely in her twenties.

Doris starred alongside Howard Keel in Calamity Jane
Doris starred alongside Howard Keel in Calamity Jane
GAB Archive via Getty Images

It has been 30 years since Doris last appeared in public, when she accepted the Cecil B. DeMille award at the 1989 Golden Globes.

She gave her final TV interview in 1994 but since then, she’s given a handful of print interviews, most recently speaking to the Hollywood Reporter to mark her 97th birthday in April.

In the interview, she spoke of her proudness at having set up the Animal Foundation (DDAF), stating: “Animal-welfare awareness has improved tremendously over the last four decades, and euthanasia rates are down to approximately 2.5 million, but there is still much work to be done.

“DDAF’s grants support nonprofit organisations and programs across the country that directly help animals and the people who love them.”

Following her retirement, Doris made the California coastal town of Carmel her home, in a residence she shared with her many pets and adopted stray animals.

In 2004, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom for her untiring service to her nation, with President George W Bush commenting: “It was a good day for our fellow creatures when she gave her good heart to the cause of animal welfare.”


RIP Celebs: Stars We Lost In 2019


What's Hot