Remembering Ann Dvorak

On this day in 1979, Ann Dvorak passed away in Honolulu from stomach cancer at the age of 68. The last few years of her life had not been particularly easy, largely due to her finances being drained by her abusive third husband. She maintained a small group of friends and had a orange tabby to keep her company, and while expressing some regrets about how the promise of her long abandoned carrier had been squandered, seemed to have found some measure of peace at the end.

I was recently contacted by a fellow Dvorak devotee who asked if I had any additional images of Ann in her later years besides what I included in Ann Dvorak: Hollywood’s Forgotten Rebel. I do have one more photo, which I am posting here. This was taken in July 1979, and it’s hard to recognize the Ann we’re familiar with in this image, but those Dvorak eyes are still there.

As much as Ann didn’t like to look back, and I am not sure she would have liked me prying into her life like I did, I do think she would have enjoyed the increased appreciation her work has experienced the last decade or so.  In honor of our fabulous gal, be sure to slow down and watch some Dvorak flicks during this hectic time.

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6 Responses to “Remembering Ann Dvorak”

  1. Dale Davis says:

    Just finished the book earlier today. Every forgotten actor deserves a biography this well-researched and thoughtfully written. I would love to read more movie star bios by this talented writer.

  2. Christina Rice says:

    Hi Dale, Thank you so much for the kind words. It’s great to hear that 3 years after publication, people are still learning about Ann. Cheers!

  3. Sidat Balgobin says:

    Hi Christina, Thanks for posting the other pic. While Ann’s appearance had changed, and did throughout her life, I found that she always had the same beautiful hands and fingers. So elegant and perfect for playing the piano. What a talented and intelligent woman. I hope she had someone to care about her and for her in her last weeks. How life can change and usually in unexpected ways. blessings, Sidat

  4. Christina Rice says:

    Hi Sidat, Thanks for suggesting I post that second image and being such a great Dvorak Dvotee!

  5. DickP says:

    I’ve tried to write a thoughtful comment to this posting four or five times now; but each time I get too choked up and tears start flowing a bit too much to continue. But, this time I’m determined. The sad thing to me is that my Mom lived to the ripe old age of 93, and I’m positive that if she had known that Ann was so ill and living in a bad state she would have flown to Hawaii to help her have a better life to the end. That’s just how she was about her old friends. Also, the irony to me is that our two daughters live in Hawaii which reminds me of Ann whenever I think of them.

    Christina, thank you ever so much for keeping Ann alive in our thoughts and memories. Bless you!!

  6. Christina Rice says:

    Aww, thanks Dick. I will always be grateful for your devotion to our Ann and that vivid remembrances of her from you and your mother were able to be used in the bio. Happy New Year, my friend.

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