I just had to take time out to post some about Annette Funicello who died at age 70 today (4/8/2013). I am greatly saddened by her death. She was such a powerhouse of talent, and she made many of us feel like she could have been our best friend, me included.
Annette Funicello was born in Utica, New York on October 22, 1942, when she was for years old she moved to Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley, where a year later she started up dance lessons. By the age of 9 Annette won a beauty contest and by the age of 13, she was discovered while dancing the lead in Swan Lake at the Starlight Bowl in Burbank CA… who discovered her? Walt Disney himself discovered the young lady and the program he had her audition for was the new childrens program The Mickey Mouse Club.
When Annette left the Mickey Mouse Club she starred in many feature films that were made by Disney, including some that I recall to this day. I loved her in The Shaggy Dog and remember being excited to see her in what was once my favorite Christmas time movie “Babes in Toyland.” I may not have been born yet when these movies were made but they were very popular to see on television when I grew up.
I may not be quite old enough to have seen Annette Funicello while the Mickey Mouse Club original cast was first broadcast, but I am old enough that I discovered the reruns on TV. And that was my very first exposure to her while she was quite young… what a talent and according to reports she was as sweet as her persona in all her shows/movies.
I kept a watch out, over the years for Annette Funicello and I recall when I heard about her suffering from MS, I saw she was appearing on a talk show on TV and I had watched and was choked up since such a beautiful person and voice was suffering so much.
As my health problems got worse here, I even had a scan done to see if what I was suffering from was MS, and I have to say I was relieved to know that if it was confirmed, I was in good company with a wonderful person that educated me some of the illness in that talk show. Thankfully my diagnosis was that I didn’t have MS after all.
I am saddened that she has died at the young age of 70 due to complications from her MS, but thankful to hear reports that she died peacefully.
Goodbye Annette, you will be missed!