Original 'Mouseketeer' Doreen Tracy Dies at 74 Amid Cancer Battle

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Doreen Tracey, a former child star who played one of the original cute-as-a-button Mouseketeers on "The Mickey Mouse Club" in the 1950s, has died, according to Disney publicist Howard Green.

The dancer was four when her family returned to the U.S., and her father opened a dance studio in Hollywood.

She had a big heart and her passing leaves an equally big hole in all of our hearts.

Tracey's life in the entertainment industry preceded and continued after her famous Disney run.

The report says she remained close to the other Mouseketeers, co-starring with them in several "Mickey Mouse Club" reunion shows at Disneyland and at Disney conventions. She maintained a lifelong association with Disney, appearing in a spinoff with Annette Funicello and such films as "Westward Ho the Wagons!" with Fess Parker.

Tracey also had a more adventurous side and in the 1960s formed a rock group called Doreen and the Invaders, touring Vietnam in 1968 shortly after the Tet Offensive, one of the most aggressive military campaigns of the war.

She admitted she regretted the photo shoot, telling The Times: "You get caught up in your own ego, not paying attention, not seeing the full repercussions".

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Born in London on April 3, 1943, Tracey arrived in the United States when she was 4 and learned to sing and dance - necessities of being a Mouseketeer - at a studio her father operated in Hollywood.

Tracey appeared on the Disney series when it aired for four years (1955-1959) on ABC.

Following her acting days, Tracey became the publicist for Frank Zappa and did a lot of administrative work for Warner Bros.

"Rest in peace Doreen Tracey".

Tracey and the Mouseketeers lasting impact on the children who grew up watching The Mickey Mouse Club is still apparent up to this day. "A true original and an original member of the Mouseketeers", said Disney CEO Robert Iger on Twitter.

"Our Dodo, as we lovingly nicknamed her, always had a smile on her face", fellow Mouseketeer Tommy Cole said in a statement.

Tracey is survived by her son, Bradley; and grandchildren Gavin and Autumn. "Your Disney family will miss you".