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Sheree North Undressed

Dawn Shirley Crang (January 17, 1932, in Los Angeles, California|Los Angeles, California - November 4, 2005 in Los Angeles), was an actress and singer who appeared in numerous Broadway shows, Hollywood, California|Hollywood movies, and television.

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Born to Richard Crang and June Shoard in 1932 (although most reference sources cite 1933), her stepfather was Edward Bethel. She was known as "Dawn Bethel" until she became "Sheree North". She married at age 16, and had her first child, Dawn Bessire (b. 1949), at the age of 17.

She was originally hired by 20th Century-Fox a few years before their superstar Marilyn Monroe became "tempermental"; when she dyed her hair, North suddenly started attracting attention as an alternative "bubbly blonde". Ironically, she played Monroe's mother decades later in the TV movie ''Marilyn: The Untold Story''.

North's film career never took off, but she made a significant return to character roles, starting with Madigan (1968). She made cameo appearances for Don Siegel, including Charley Varrick, The Shootist, and Telefon.

Her TV credits include ''The Golden Girls'', ''Matlock'', ''Magnum, P.I.'', and ''The Mary Tyler Moore Show'', in which she played Lou Grant's old flame. She secured a place in pop culture as Kramer's mother in the 1995 ''Seinfeld'' episode in which his first name was finally revealed, and appeared in Part 1 of the 1998 series finale.

North died from complications during surgery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (IMDb claims it was cancer surgery, but no other report of her death specified the nature of the surgery).

She is survived by her fourth husband, two daughters, and a grandchild.


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