Who was Dawn Wells and how did Gilligan's Island star die?

DAWN Wells was an actress that was celebrated for her role on Gilligan's Island, an American sitcom created and produced by Sherwood Schwartz.

It was announced on December 30 that she sadly passed away at 82-years-old.

Who was Dawn Wells?

Dawn Wells was an actress from Nevada.

She attended Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri, where she majored in chemistry.

She then transferred to the University of Washington in Seattle, where she graduated in 1960 with a degree in theater arts and design.

Dawn was a beauty queen and crowned Miss Nevada in 1959. She later went on to represent her state at the Miss America Pageant in 1960.

In her later years, she focused her efforts on her philanthropic work.

Her charitable efforts included working as chair of the Terry Lee Wells Foundation, focusing on women and children in Northern Nevada, and she received the Elephant Sanctuary Trumpeting Award for her work with the Elephant Sanctuary.

How did she die?

Dawn passed away in Los Angeles, California from complications due to Covid-19, according to Deadline.

She is the last surviving cast member of the hit show other than Tina Louise.

Dawn is survived by her stepsister, Weslee Wells.

Who did Dawn Wells play in Gilligan's Island?

Dawn starred on the popular CBS series as the wholesome farm girl Mary Ann Summers from the show’s premiere in 1964 until its end in 1967.

She said that her character "was molded by me, from me" and that the "values and principles" were built on her upbringing.

The show featured three women and four men marooned on a desert island after their Hawaiian boat tour crashes off the coast of Honolulu.

Other characters included SS Minnow were Gilligan (Bob Denver); the Skipper (Alan Hale Jr.); millionaire Thurston Howell III (Jim Backus) and his wife, Lovey (Natalie Schafer); the Professor (Russell Johnson); and Hollywood starlet Ginger Grant (Louise).

In honor of the show's 50th anniversary a few years ago, Dawn co-wrote the book What Would Mary Ann Do? A Guide to Life with Steve Stinson.

"We love Mary Ann because she is the future, the hope of our world. The youngest of the castaways, Mary Ann has her entire life in front of her," read the forward in her biography.

"Watching her unfailing good cheer, her optimism is never in question. We love her because we need her emotional support and her belief that all will turn out well … We love Mary Ann because of Dawn Wells."

What other TV shows and movies did she appear in?

Dawn debuted her acting chops in 1961 with her appearance in The Wagon Train.

Over her long, 58-year career in film and television, she made appearances in movies like The New Intern and That Dreaded Sundown.

She also had stints on tv shows like Baywatch, the Wild Wild West, and more recently, RuPaul's Drag Race and Girlfriends.

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