Annette Funicello, one of the best-known members of the original 1950s "Mickey Mouse Club" and a star of numerous 1960s "beach party" films, died Monday at a California hospital, the Walt Disney Co. said.
Funicello, who was 70, "died peacefully from complications due to multiple sclerosis, a disease she battled for over 25 years," the Disney statement said.
"We are so sorry to lose Mother," her three children said in a statement. "She is no longer suffering anymore and is now dancing in heaven. We love and will miss her terribly." (much more at CNN, hat tip Dan Reihl)
Annette Funicello official website here.