Monday, January 25, 2010

Smithfield to reflect on star Gardner's death

The town of Smithfield has become synonymous with one of Hollywood's legendary leading ladies from the golden era, Ava Gardner. Today, visitors to the Ava Gardner Museum in Smithfield will be able to honor her, exactly 20 years after her death.

Visitors "will receive a reproduction of the program given to mourners at the service held at her graveside in the Johnston County town," says the AP.

Gardner died in London on Jan. 25, 1990 at age 67. She was buried four days later at Sunset Memorial Park alongside her parents and siblings.

She starred in films including "The Barefoot Contessa," "The Night of the Iguana," and "The Snows of Kilimanjaro" during a career that peaked in the 1950s and '60s. She appeared in a handful of episodes of the CBS prime-time drama "Knot's Landing" in the mid-1980s.

According to Wikipedia, Gardner was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for her work in Mogambo (1953). She appeared in several popular films during the 1950s, and received BAFTA Award nominations for her performances in Bhowani Junction (1956), On the Beach (1959) and The Night of the Iguana (1964).

During her life, Gardner was married to the likes of Mickey Rooney, Artie Shaw and Frank Sinatra.

Note: Edited to get the "correct" Rooney mentioned. (Thanks, KB!)

(Image from


Kevin Brewer said...

Andy Rooney?

He was a few steps above his pay grade there.

Kevin Brewer said...

Mickey Rooney?

Still a coup.

Jessica said...

Thanks for the post. Check out the Ava Gardner Museum website for even more info on Ava Gardner.