Joan Tabor ~ The Doomed Starlet

Joan Tabor

Joan Tabor was a beautiful and talented starlet who died tragically young.

She was born Marilyn Joan Tabor on September 16, 1932 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Her father was a teacher and her mother worked as a secretary. After graduating from high school she attended the Patricia Stevens school of modeling in Minneapolis, Minnesota. At the age of twenty she moved to Illinois to study at Augustana College. Joan married David Gold, a stockbroker from Chicago, in November of 1953. Their daughter, Lauren, was born six months later. She began her career modeling and acting in Chicago. The voluptuous beauty was signed by William Shiffrin, Jayne Mansfield's agent. Joan quickly landed roles on numerous television shows including The Danny Thomas Show, The Eve Arden Show, and The Red Skelton Hour. She also starred in two episodes of Perry Mason. Her marriage to David ended in 1956. Then she had brief romances with actors Hugh O'Brien and Lang Jeffries. Joan was supposed to star opposite Jerry Lewis in The Bellboy but was replaced before filming began.

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In 1961 she appeared in the films Teenage Millionaire and Espionage: Far East. She had become a popular pin-up and was featured on the cover of Tempo and Escapade. While guest starring on King of Diamonds she met Broderick Crawford. They were married on January 4, 1962 in Las Vegas. Joan continued to act but most of the roles she got were just bit parts. Her last television appearance was in a 1964 episode of Mr. Ed. She and Broderick worked together in stage productions of Born Yesterday and Dead Pigeon. Unfortunately their marriage became violent and she filed for divorce in December of 1965. At the trial she testified that Broderick "pushed her" and the stress of their marriage caused her to develop ulcers. Their divorce was granted in April of 1967. Soon after she reconciled with her first husband David Gold. Some sources claim the couple had remarried. Tragically on December 18, 1968 she died after accidentally overdosing on flu medication. Joan was just thirty-six years old. She was buried at Woodlawn Cemetery in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

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