Devastated and brokenhearted, the famous Hollywood icon Debbie Reynolds, aged 84, has died. Her death is just a day after her famous daughter Carrie Fisher, best known for her role as Princess Leia in the Star Wars films, passed away.
Debbie Reynold’s son Todd called for an ambulance at about 1 pm on Wednesday, December 29th. Initially, he suspected she had suffered a stroke. She had been making plans for her daughter’s funeral at the time. When asked why did Debbie Reynolds die, her son responded that the stress of her daughter’s death was just “too much” for her.
The mother and daughter had had their ups and downs throughout the years. Fisher even penned a semi-autobiographical novel called “Postcards from The Edge” about their relationship. It eventually became adapted into a movie, with the heroine, played by
Meryl Streep, struggling with drugs and alcohol, and experiencing a strained relationship with her mother, portrayed by Shirley MacLaine. In the end, Fisher and Reynolds were a deeply bonded mother and daughter pair, and Reynolds son Todd claimed that her last wish before dying was to be with her daughter again.
Reynolds was born as Mary Frances in 1932 but later changed to the stage name of Debbie. She was considered Hollywood royalty and became famous at 19 after starring in the cinematic musical classic “Singin’ in the Rain” with Gene Kelly, in 1952. A Multi-talented and versatile entertainer, she was not only an actress, she was an exquisite singer and brilliant dancer.
Her Hollywood résumé was overflowing from a career that saw her working in countless films, TV shows and on Broadway, winning her numerous prestigious awards. It was just last year that she received the lifetime achievement award from the Screen Actors Guild. Her daughter Carrie presented it to her at the ceremony.
In 1959 she had to endure humiliation when a scandal broke out. Her husband Eddie Fisher, the father of Carrie Fisher, divorced her to marry Elizabeth Taylor. Shockingly, he had been having an affair with her. She would later to go on to marry Harry Karl until they divorced in 1973. Finally, she would marry Richard Hamlett, whom she went on to divorce in 1996.
Additionally, she was much more than just an award-winning entertainer. She also received accolades for her 56 years of humanitarian work with a charitable group called “The Thalians.” This charity deals with the mental health issues of returning army veterans. She eventually became their President Emeritus.
A Passion for Memorabilia
Reynolds was also famous for her passion for the preservation of historical movie memorabilia. In 1970 she purchased countless costumes, props and photographs from a Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer auction. Additionally, she made several attempts to create museums to display these valuable items. However, ultimately plagued with bankruptcy, in 2014 they all were auctioned off.
The total value was $10.79 million. Items included items Marilyn Monroe’s famous white dress that she wore in “The Seven Year Itch”, which sold for $4.6 million, and the bowler hat originally worn by Charlie Chaplin.
Hollywood is in mourning at the striking loss of Reynolds. Famous names such as Larry King and William Shatner have taken to Twitter to show outpourings of grief.
Reynolds is survived by her son Todd Fisher, and granddaughter Billie Lourd.