Socialite and Actress Dina Merrill Has Died

Old Hollywood and Broadway actress Dina Merrill died in her East Hampton home May 22 at the age of 93. Son Stanley said that his mother had Lewy Body dementia.

Dina_Merrill_1968By Photo by John Engstead/Helen Ferguson, public relations-Los Angeles – eBayfrontback, Public Domain,

After making her Broadway debut in the original play “The Mermaids Singing”, Merrill appeared in the revival of the thriller play “Angel Street”, and a revival of the musical “On Your Toes”.

She made her screen debut in 1955 in “A Place Full of Strangers”. From there she went on to appear in over 100 productions including “Desk Set”, “Climax”, “Don’t Give Up the Ship”, “Operation Petticoat”, “Butterfield 8”, “The Sundowners”, “The Young Savages”, “Dr. Kildare”, “The Expendables”, “The Courtship of Eddie’s Father”, “Rawhide”, “Daniel Boone”, “Bonanza”, “Batman”, “Mission: Impossible”, “Medical Center”, “Hawaii Five-O”, “The Love Boat”, “Hotel”, “Murder, She Wrote”, “Mighty Joe Young”, “100 Centre Street”, and her final role in 2009 in an uncredited role as a woman in the courtroom in “Beyond a Reasonable Doubt”.

Dina_MerrillBy Trailer screenshotLicencing information : and – The Sundowners trailer, Public Domain,

She was on the board of trustees for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and a trustee for the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. Along with her various endeavours and philanthropic work, Merrill’s accomplishments include a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Academy of Dramatic Art.

She was born Nedenia Marjorie Hutton in New York City on December 29, 1923. Her mother was the heiress to the Post Cereals fortune and at one time was considered the richest woman in the United States and owner of Mar-a-Lago and stock broker E.F. Hutton. Before making her acting debut on Broadway in 1945, she attended the Miss Porter’s School, the American Academy of Dramatic Art, and George Washington University.

Predeceased by daughter Heather, and son David Post Rumbough, Merrill is survived by her third husband Ted Hartley; children Nedenia and Stanley; grandchildren and great grandchildren.

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