Bettie Page [wikipedia], Pinup Queen of 1950's, has passed away. She died of pneumonia in a Los Angeles hospital Thursday December 11, 2008. Betty Page was 85 years young.
Bettie Page, one of America's most photographed pin-up girls during the 1950s, died in Los Angeles on Thursday from pneumonia, her agent said. She was 85.
Bettie Page (1923-2008)
Page was a ubiquitous sight during the 1950s, propelled to stardom when she posed for Playboy as Miss January 1955. Soon her image was gracing playing cards, record albums and bedroom posters across the country.
She stopped modeling in 1957, retreated from the public spotlight and turned to religion. She enjoyed a renaissance of sorts in the 1980s, as a new generation of fans became obsessed with her legacy.
Her agent, Mark Roesler, said Page was admitted to a Los Angeles-area hospital four weeks ago. She never regained consciousness after suffering a heart attack earlier this month.
Bettie Mae Page was born on April 22, 1923, in Nashville, one of six children. She and two sisters were sent to an orphanage after her father went to jail and her mother could not cope on her own. Page later described her father as "a sex fiend" who started sexually molesting her when she was 13.
Page, armed with an arts degree with Peabody College in Nashville, did her first modeling work in the 1940s after moving to San Francisco with the first of her three husbands. After they divorced in 1947, she pursued modeling in New York. Photos from a shoot with Miami photographer Bunny Yeager ended up in the pages of Playboy.
The layout featured Page winking at the camera wearing only a Santa hat as she decorated a Christmas tree. Playboy founder Hugh Hefner described it as "a milestone in the history of the magazine," which he had founded less than two years earlier.
"I think that she was a remarkable lady, an iconic figure in pop culture who influenced sexuality, taste in fashion, someone who had a tremendous impact on our society. She was a very dear person." Playboy founder Hugh Hefner told to AP when interviewed about the death of Playboy Playmate of January 1955.