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20/12/2017 09:00 GMT

Heather North Dead: Voice Of Scooby Doo's Daphne Dies, Aged 71

She voiced the cartoon fave for more than 40 years.

Voice actress Heather North has died at the age of 71, a family friend has confirmed.

The friend told Deadline that Heather died at her home in Studio City, Los Angeles, on 30 November, following what was described as a “long illness”.

Heather was best known for her portrayal of the mystery-solving Daphne Blake in the ‘Scooby Doo’ cartoons, beginning in 1970 with the original series ‘Scooby Doo, Where Are You!’.

ABC Photo Archives via Getty Images
Fred, Daphne, Velma and Shaggy from Scooby Doo's 'Mystery Inc.'

She returned to voice Daphne in multiple shows over the decades, including ‘The Scooby Doo/Dynomutt Hour’, ‘The New Scooby And Scrappy-Doo Show’ and one memorable crossover episode of ‘Johnny Bravo’ in 1997.

Heather’s final portrayal of Daphne was in 2003, when she returned for two direct-to-video feature-length films, ‘Scooby Doo! And The Legend Of The Vampire’ and ‘Scooby Doo! And The Monster Of Mexico’.

Although best known for voicing Daphne, Heather did appear in several live-action roles, mostly in the 1960s, including shows like ‘The Monkees’, ‘Green Acres’ and the 1971 Disney original movie ‘The Barefoot Executive’, in which she starred as Kurt Russell’s love interest.

Heather was also a cast member in the US soap ‘Days Of Our Lives’, playing doctor Sandy Horton for a five year stint.

NBC via Getty Images
Heather in 1972, on the set of 'Days Of Our Lives'

It was on the set of ‘Days Of Our Lives’ where she eventually met the man who would go on to become her husband, soap producer H. Wesley Kenney, who she was married to until his death in 2015.

The actress is survived by her son, Kevin, and daughter-in-law, Stephanie, with a memorial service to be held on Wednesday (20 December) in Studio City, Los Angeles.

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