Shirley Temple (Black), the actress formerly known for her bouncy blonde ringlets and status as 'America's Little Darling,' has died at the age of 85.
According to her publicist Cheryl Kagan, she passed from natural causes on Feb. 10 at her home in California.
"We salute her for a life of remarkable achievements as an actor, as a diplomat, and most importantly as our beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and adored wife for fifty-five years of the late and much missed Charles Alden Black," a family statement reads.
A triple threat for her singing, dancing and acting ability, Temple became the top box-office draw from 1935, the year she turned 7, to 1938.
The adorable dimple-faced Temple is credited for helping save 20th Century Fox from bankruptcy with the success of her films "Curly Top" and "The Littlest Rebel."
When she danced with the remarkable Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, a black tap dancer, up the steps in "The Little Colonel," it became a landmark moment in cinema history.
And at the height of her fame, she even had a drink named after her, an appropriately sweet and non-alcoholic mixture of ginger ale and grenadine, topped with a maraschino cherry!
A downside of becoming a screen icon at such an early age -- the audience lost interest in Temple as she got older -- always labeled as the adorable 7-year-old who put a smile on movie-goers' faces.
At the age of 21, she retired from films and went on to raise a family and became active in politics, holding a number of different diplomatic posts, including ambassador to Czechoslovakia.
But despite her early retirement from show business, Temple cherished her time on screen.
When accepting the Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award in 2005, she joked, "I have one piece of advice for those of you who want to receive the lifetime achievement award. Start early."
In 1999, the American Film Institute ranked Temple No. 18 on their Top 50 Screen Legends of all time list, cementing her status in film history.
In regards to her personal life, Temple was married to her second husband, Charles Alden Black, for 55 years until his death in 2005. The actress is survived by her three children, Susan, Charles Jr., and Lori.
Temple with her family in 1957
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