March 16, 2014
NEW YORK -- Walt Disney Co. says actress Annette Funicello has died at age 70.
Funicello was known as America's sweetheart, but she first became known as a Disney Mouseketeer.
Later she starred in beach movies with costar Frankie Avalon. The first Beach Party movie came out in 1963. She starred in 20 movies and recorded more than 30 albums.
In 1987, Funicello was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and went public with her condition five years later. In later years, MS left her confined to a wheelchair.