It’s a sad day in Hollywood. Legendary child actress Shirley Temple Black has passed away at the age of 85, according to the Los Angeles Times on February 11. Temple’s smile and spunky personality “lifted a filmgoing nation’s spirits during the Depression and then grew up to be a diplomat.”
Shirley passed away in her home in Woodside, Calf. late Monday evening as reported by her publicist, Cheryl J. Kagan. Kagan gave no cause of death.
Born April 23, 1928 Temple went on to star in over 61 movies and television productions. Her first production was a short titled “Runt Page” in 1932. Her last screen appearance was in 1963 on “The Red Skelton Hour.” Shirley’s most notable roles were in “Bright Eyes,” “Baby Take a Bow,” “The Little Colonel,” “Curly Top,” “The Little Princess,” and “Heidi.”
In 1945 Shirley Temple married actor John Agar. The couple had one child, Linda Susan Agar. The pair divorced in 1950. Agar was most known for his roles alongside John Wayne in the film “Sands of Iwo Jima,” “Fort Apache,” and “She Wore a Yellow Ribbon.”
In 1950 Shirley married Charles Alden Black, a California businessman. Black was known for his oceanography. The couple had two children, Lori Black and Charles Alden Black Jr. Charles passed away in 2005 from myelodysplastic syndrome on August 4.
During her life, Shirley won the Academy Juvenile Award, the Kennedy Centers Honors award, and the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award. Black recorded 36 soundtracks and penned the autobiography “Child Star: An Autobiography” in 1988.
In 1973 Shirley Temple became one of the first prominent women to speak openly about breast cancer after her diagnoses in 1972. The tumor was removed and Black had a modified radical mastectomy.
1967 to 1992 Shirley followed her political ambitions. In 1967 Temple ran unsuccessfully in a special election to fill a seat in California’s 11th congressional district left open by the death of J. Arthur Younger. In 1969 she was appointed Representative to the 24th United Nations General Assembly by President Richard Nixon. In 1974 she was appointed by President Gerald Ford to the role of United States Ambassador to Ghana. Black left that role in 1976. Later that same year she was appointed to the role of first female Chief of Protocol of the United States. A role that lasted until 1977. President George H.W. Bush appointed Shirley in 1989 as the role of United States Ambassador to Czechoslovakia, which she served until 1992.
Shirley Temple Black lived a rewarding and successful life. Please share your thoughts and condolences in the comments below.
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