Mary Frances “Debbie” Reynolds (April 1, 1932 – December 28, 2016) was an actress, singer, and businesswoman from the United States.
Her career lasted nearly 70 years.
For her performance as Helen Kane in the 1950 film Three Little Words, she received a Golden Globe nomination for Most Promising Newcomer.
Her breakthrough performance as Kathy Selden in Singin’ in the Rain was her first main role (1952). Her other credits include The Affairs of Dobie Gillis (1953) and Susan Slept Here (1954).
Reynolds received the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award in January 2015. She earned the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award in 2016.
The next year, a documentary about her life, Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, was released, which turned out to be her final cinematic performance; the film premiered on HBO on January 7, 2017.
Reynolds died on December 28, 2016, one day after her daughter, fellow actress Carrie Fisher, died of a hemorrhagic stroke.
Meet Maxine Harmon and Raymond Francis Reynolds
Reynolds was born in El Paso, Texas, on April 1, 1932, to Maxene N. “Minnie” Harman and Raymond Francis “Ray” Reynolds, a carpenter for the Southern Pacific Railroad. Her mother Maxine, did laundry for a living while the family resided in a shanty on Magnolia Street in El Paso.
She was of Scotch-Irish and English ancestry and was raised in her mother’s rigorous Nazarene religion. She has a two-year-old older brother named William.