Olivia Newton-John, Star of Grease, Dies at 73 Due to Breast Cancer


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Singer / actress Olivia Newton-John has been open about her battle with breast cancer for the past few decades, and it was confirmed by her husband that she died on 8 August at her ranch in Southern California.

Rose to Fame in Blockbuster “Grease”

Olivia rose to fame as Sandy in the 1978 blockbuster Grease, which was a film adaptation of the Broadway musical.

The then 29-year-old Olivia played the lead role of high-school senior Sandy, starring aside John Travolta. The film became the biggest box-office hit of 1978, with its soundtrack album spending 12 consecutive weeks at the top of the US charts.

Olivia’s performance was even nominated for a Golden Globe, and she performed the track “Hopelessly Devoted to You” at the 1979 Oscars.

Four-Time Grammy Award Winner

Before she was an actress, Olivia started out as a singer at the young age of 14.

She recorded for first single in 1966, and her first solo album in 1971. She then represented the UK in the 1974 Eurovision contest with the track “Long Live Love”.

She then released country music up until she was cast in Grease. Afterwards, her musical career underwent a shift in genre, as seen in her 1981 album and titular lead track “Physical”.

Throughout her career, she won four Grammy Awards, had five number one hits, and ten Top Ten hits on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. She also boasts global sales of more than 100 million records, making her one of the best-selling music artists of the 20th century.

Long-Standing Battle with Breast Cancer

Olivia was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1992, which was also the year her father died from cancer.

She then went into remission for a while, but had a second cancer diagnosis in 2013. In 2017, Olivia revealed to the media that breast cancer had spread to her spine.

Since her first diagnosis, Olivia became an activist for cancer research and treatment, setting up the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Research Centre in Melbourne.

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Passed Away on 8 August

According to a statement by her husband, John Easterling, on her official Facebook page, Olivia has passed away on the morning of 8 August.

At the age of 73, she died peacefully at her ranch in Southern California, surrounded by family and friends.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that any donations be made in her memory to the Olivia Newton-John Foundation Fund (ONJFoundationFund.org).

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Featured Image: Facebook (Olivia Newton-John), Getty Images