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Beloved star Annette Funicello dies

3:13 PM, Apr 8, 2013   |    comments
HOLLYWOOD, FL - SEPTEMBER 14: Annette Funicello (R) kisses Mickey Mouse 14 September 1993 after she received a star on the famous Hollywood Walk of Fame in California. The U.S. actress and singer is best known as a famous mouseketeer on the popular 1960's television show, 'The Mickey Mouse Club' as well as the beach movies she made with Frankie Avalon. (Photo credit VINCE BUCCI/AFP/Getty Images)
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Disney's official fan club has just broken the news on Twitter:

Annette Funicello has died at age 70.

The actress, singer and beloved Mousketeer had been hospitalized in Bakersfield due to complications from multiple sclerosis, according to Extra.

Her family confirmed to Extra that Funicello died from complications of multiple sclerosis. They were by her side when she was taken off life support. Funicello had been in an MS coma for years, reports the site.

Funicello was 12 when she became a Mouseketeer. As a teen, she was launched on a successful singing and acting career, but she really gained popularity when she co-starred with Frankie Avalon in a series of "Beach Party" movies in the mid-1960s.

In 1992, Annette announced she had MS.

Funicello was married to her first husband, Jack Gilardi, from 1965 until 1981, and had three children. In 1986, she married California harness racing horse breeder/trainer Glen Holt.

Ann Oldenburg, USA TODAY

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