Film star Doris Day dies aged 97

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Famously, she recorded the song in less than 15 minutes. "I couldn't believe it", she says in the recording, which was provided by Councilman P.G. Sittenfeld's office at the time.

In the film-in which Day played a tomboy character-she sang the lines: "Once I had a secret love / That lived within the heart of me / All too soon my secret love / Became impatient to be free". She founded the Doris Day Pet Foundation, now the Doris Day Animal Foundation - an NGO which aims to help animals in the United States - in 1978. "But I am Miss Chastity Belt, and that's all there is to it".

"I've always said that age is just a number and I have never paid much attention to birthdays, but it's great to finally know how old I really am!" "Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor, Kim Novak?"

Doris Day, in a 1957 publicity photo.

Born on April 3, 1922, in OH, her real name was Doris Mary Ann von Kappelhoff, according to DorisDay.com.

In the 1930s, attracted to music and dance, she formed part of a dance duo - but that ended after a horrific accident in which her leg was crushed when a vehicle she was riding in was hit by a train.

During her 14-month recovery, she took singing lessons and modeled her voice on what she called the "casual yet clean" style of Ella Fitzgerald.

In 1968, as she was winding down her career, her third husband, producer Martin Melcher, died unexpectedly at 52. The two were together from 1946 to 1949. Her turn as the mother of a kidnapped child, in The Man Who Knew Too Much, was an eye-opener. The movie not only earned her the only Oscar nomination for acting that she ever received, but also sparked a series of movies starring the duo, including Lover, Come Back and Send Me No Flowers. The Foundation announced her death this morning.

Born Doris Mary Ann Keppelhoff in Cincinnati, Ohio, Day become a well-known face in Hollywood films and musicals during the 1950s and 1960s.

Day married a fourth time at age 52, to businessman Barry Comden in 1976. By the time of her death, she had long retreated from show business and had gained renown for her work in animal welfare. She died early today at her Carmel Valley, California home, surrounded by friends.

She stayed away from entertainment circles for more than 20 years after accepting a lifetime achievement honour from Golden Globe organisers in 1989 but released a CD in 2011. She continued to score hits including "My Dreams Are Getting Better All the Time", "Till the End of Time" and "I Got the Sun in the Mornin'", and she reached wide audiences with her USA tours and her appearances on Bob Hope's radio program.

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