Pendleton, who was divorced, is survived by her daughter and two grandchildren, Luke and Griffen. All rights reserved.

Some of the original Mouseketeers reunite at Disneyland in 1995 for the 40th anniversary of their show: Karen Pendleton, left, Sharon Baird, Sherry Alberoni, Doreen Tracey, Cheryl Holdridge, Don Grady, Tommy Cole, Lonnie Burr and Bobby Burgess. She went on to finish high school and got married. Golden Age actress and singer Rhonda Fleming has died at 97. While she needed a wheelchair for the rest of her life, her mobility didn’t stop Pendleton from returning to school to earn both a bachelor’s and a master’s. Karen Pendleton, an original Mouseketeer on "The Mickey Mouse Club," has died.

“It gave her the opportunity to relive great memories and to meet so many ‘Mickey Mouse Club’ fans who watched the show as kids and loved her,” said Staci Bletscher, her daughter.

Disney historian and author Lorraine Santoli confirmed in a statement to USA TODAY Tuesday that Pendleton died from a heart attack in Fresno, California, on Sunday.

Among the bands that made their mark on Slash Records were X, the Germs, Los Lobos, the Blasters and the Violent Femmes. ", Original Mouseketeer Dennis Day's former handyman arrested in his death, Your California Privacy Rights/Privacy Policy. As one of the youngest of the Mouseketeers, Pendleton was best known for her shoulder length blond curls and for being paired with Cubby O'Brien during the Mickey Mouse Club's closing number, "Alma Mater (Now it's time to say goodbye…). Karen Anita Pendleton (August 1, 1946 – October 6, 2019) was an original Mickey Mouse Club Mouseketeer on the ABC television series from 1955–1959. Pendleton is survived by her daughter and two grandchildren. Despite leaving Hollywood, "The Mickey Mouse Club" always remained close to Pendleton's heart.

She was matter-of-fact about giving up show business. But the show was canceled in 1959 and Pendleton’s career as an actress was done before she was even a teen, though life would take her in unexpected directions.

Portrait session with former Mousketeer Karen Pendleton at home in 1997.

It gave her the opportunity to relive great memories and to meet so many Mickey Mouse Club fans that watched the show as kids and loved her. She was paired with fellow Mouseketeer Cubby O’Brien in the show’s closing number, “Alma Mater.”. ©2020 FOX News Network, LLC. Cradle to grave, Hector Albert Padilla, who passed last week at age 90, was a fixture on the L.A. football scene and the lives of the players he coached. But her life changed radically in 1983, when she injured her spine in a car accident in Fresno, leaving her paralyzed from the waist down. Her father was a set designer and was firm that his daughter not pursue show business after “The Mickey Mouse Club” went off the air. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten,

With an up-close look at the inequities and indignities that disabled people had to endure, she became an advocate for disabled people and for years served on the California Assn. “People would come up to her, tell her how much they loved the show and she was just so sweet. “The Mickey Mouse Club” was must-watch TV in the 1950s with the after-school set, led along by host Jimmie Dodd and the rock star of Mouseketeers, Annette Funicello — 60 minutes of wholesomeness that parents trusted implicitly. While we are all connected, we are also uniquely individual with a “fingerprint” of experiences, thoughts, and beliefs.

All rights reserved.

Pendleton welcomed a daughter in 1973 and divorced in 1981. She also worked at a shelter for battered women. Bob Biggs, founder of iconic L.A. independent label Slash Records, dies at 74. She was the original Mickey Mouse Club Mouseketeer on ABC television from 1955 to 1959. There were originally 26 of them who would alternate on the show but Disney cut the group down to nine after the first season, sticking with those who had the personality and work ethic the studio wanted. Disney historian and author Lorraine Santoli made the announcement, The Hollywood Reporter shared on Tuesday. Many told her that they named their daughters Karen in her honor.”, ANNETTE FUNICELLO FEARED 'PEOPLE WOULDN'T LOVE HER' AFTER MS DIAGNOSIS, CLAIMS MOUSEKETEER, Karen Pendleton starred in "The Mickey Mouse Club" from 1955 until 1959. You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times. She was 73. Herbert Kretzmer, lyricist for the hit musical ‘Les Misérables,’ dies at 95. She and Cubby O’Brien — nearly as young as she — would faithfully stare into the camera and say, “And now it’s time to say goodbye” as the show drew to a close. Santoli said Pendleton joined the "The Mickey Mouse Club" after being recruited by Disney producers at a dancing school in Los Angeles.

or redistributed. Fox News Flash top entertainment headlines for Oct. 8, Why 'The Rock' is endorsing THIS candidate, 'Bachelorette' Clare Crawley, producers slammed for pressuring male contestants to strip naked during date, Altered pic of Ice Cube, 50 Cent in 'Trump 2020' hats goes viral, 2020 CMT Music Awards: How to watch, who’s performing and everything else you need to know, Gloria Estefan says it was ‘tough’ revisiting her daughter Emily's coming out as gay, Kane Brown, Ashley McBryde talk hosting the 2020 CMT Music Awards: 'No idea what to expect', 50 Cent doubles down on opposition to Joe Biden's tax plan: 'I don’t want to be 20cent'. Karen Pendleton, one of the original Mouseketeers on “The Mickey Mouse Club,” died from a heart attack on Sunday in Fresno, Calif. She was 73.

She was one of only nine Mouseketeers who were on the show during its entire original run. (Photo by Ann Summa/Getty Images), ‘I DREAM OF JEANNIE’ STAR BARBARA EDEN RECALLS THE LAST TIME SHE SAW LARRY HAGMAN: ‘HE DIDN’T LOOK SICK’. In 1983, Pendleton was in an automobile accident that paralyzed her from the waist down. All market data delayed 20 minutes. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Dean, who helped San Francisco win two Super Bowls, was 68. Fred Dean, fearsome pass rusher of 49ers’ dynasty, dies battling COVID-19. In addition to her daughter, Pendleton is survived by two grandchildren. Rhonda Fleming, an actress and singer who starred opposite such leading men as Kirk Douglas, Burt Lancaster and Ronald Reagan, has died at 97. Former Arco CEO Lodwrick Cook, who staged one of the zaniest charity telethons in history to rebuild L.A.'s Central Library, has died at 92.

Pendleton left Hollywood, but she never forgot her time in “The Mickey Mouse Club.” In fact, she co-starred in many reunion shows and parades at Disneyland. Spencer Davis, ‘Gimme Some Lovin” rock star, dead at 81, With Steve Winwood as lead vocalist, the Spencer Davis Group had two No.

©2020 FOX News Network, LLC.

Mickey Mouse Club reunions remained a favorite for Pendleton. According to the outlet, Pendleton was recruited to audition for “The Mickey Mouse Club” when producers visited dancing schools in Los Angeles in hopes of finding children to try out for a spot on the show. During its run, the show was wildly popular and Pendleton was hard to miss. In addition to this, Pendleton went on to work at a shelter for abused women and became an advocate for those with disabilities as a board member for the California Association of the Physically Handicapped, the outlet shared.

James Redford, a filmmaker, activist and son of actor Robert Redford, has died of liver cancer at the age of 58. Karen Pendleton's life took a different direction when a car accident left her paralyzed and she devoted herself to working with the disabled. I believe the pathway to healing looks a little different for each of us even though the human experience is similar in many ways. “She never regretted that it all ended. She also attended fan shows and conventions. Pendleton, like most of the Mouseketeers, was recruited after Walt Disney made a sweep of local dance schools looking for talent. MAN ARRESTED IN DEATH OF DENNIS DAY, ORIGINAL MICKEY MOUSE CLUB MOUSEKETEER. Get all the day's most vital news with our Today's Headlines newsletter, sent every weekday morning. Fancher recalled pushing her through Disneyland when the amusement park celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2005 and coming away stunned at how many people recognized her. The former child star left show business after the beloved series ended to attend school and start a family, but the show "lived on in syndication for decades thereafter, entertaining generations of children around the world.". Lodwrick Cook, epitome of L.A.’s bygone era of corporate engagement, dies. “My mom loved her Mouseketeer family,” her daughter Staci revealed in a statement.