LOS ANGELES — Dawn Wells, who played with the healthy Mary Ann one of a misfit group of shipwrecked castaways on the 1960s sitcom”Gilligan’s Island,” died Wednesday of triggers associated with COVID-19, her publicist said.
Wells died peacefully in a residential center in Los Angeles, publicist Harlan Boll said. “There’s much longer to Dawn Wells” compared to the”Gilligan’s Isle” personality that brought her fame, Boll said in a statement.
Besides TV, stage, and film acting credits, her additional real-life characters comprised instructor, motivational speaker, and conservationist, Boll said.
Tina Louise, 86, who played with Ginger the film star, is the last surviving member of a cast that included Bob Denver as the title character; Alan Hale Jr. as the Skipper; Jim Backus and Natalie Schafer as wealthy passengers Thurston and Lovey Howell, along with Russell Johnson, Called the Professor.
“We discussed in developing a cultural milestone which has continued to deliver relaxation and smiles to individuals in this challenging time. I expect people will remember her the way I do — always with a grin on her face.”
“Oh, this sad.
“Two and a Half Men” star Jon Cryer tweeted that it was a”thrill” to fulfill Wells when she was seen with the series, including, “She couldn’t have been more beautiful and gracious.”
Wells, a native of Reno, Nevada, represented her nation from the 1959 Miss America pageant and immediately pivoted into an acting career.
Then came”Gilligan’s Island,” goofy, good-natured humor that beamed from 1964-67 which became an improbable but indelible part of popular culture. Wells’ comely but naive Mary Ann complemented Louise’s worldly Ginger and became benign’60s TV variations of gender symbols.
Wells’ apparel comprised a gingham dress and shorts which covered her belly button, together with both theatres on display in Los Angeles at The Hollywood Museum.
TV films spinoffs in the show followed, such as 1978’s”Rescue from Gilligan’s Island,” however Wells also moved on to other TV guest characters and movies such as the 2002 vacuum cleaner comedy”Super Sucker” with Jeff Daniels. She starred on stage at tons of plays, such as”Chapter 2″ and”The Odd Couple.”
In 2013, she was admired for her job using a Tennessee-based refuge, ” The Elephant Sanctuary.
Dawn wrote”A Guide To Life: What Can Mary Ann Do?” With observations about her personality as well as the cultural changes that happened while she had been stranded.
2 decades back, a buddy launched a GoFundMe driveway to help pay for medical and other prices for Wells, even though she whined she did not require the assistance. She did wind up admitting her need and approved over $180,000 in contributions.
“Wow! I’m amazed at the kindness and kindness I’ve received” in reaction to this fundraising drive,” Wells stated in a societal networking post at the moment. She stated a”dear friend” undertook it following a frank dialog.
She recounted musing to him“’Where did the time go? I don’t understand how this occurred. I thought I had been taking all of the appropriate measures to make sure my golden years. Now, here I am, no family, no husband, no children, and no money. ”’
Wells included from the article she was thankful to her inviting fans and her prognosis remained optimistic.