Legendary bombshell actress has died

The iconic actress Raquel Welch, renowned for her role as a sex symbol in the 1960s, passed away Wednesday after a short illness. She was 82. Her representative reported Wednesday to that she passed away peacefully in the morning. Her brilliant career spanned over 50 years, with over 30 films and 50 television series and appearances, as well as a successful line of wigs. She is survived by her two children, son Damon and daughter Tahnee.

Raquel Welch is most well-known for her breakout role in the 1966 sci-fi movie “Fantastic Voyage,” which skyrocketed her to fame and made her a sex symbol. Discussing her role in the movie in an interview with The Post in 2012, she said she had a crush on her co-star Stephen Boyd, but was too afraid to admit it as it was her first big movie with Fox and she was surrounded by big names.

Welch was born on September 5th, 1940 and grew up participating in ballet and beauty pageants. She attended San Diego State College on a theater arts scholarship and starred in several theater productions. She was a two-time Golden Globe nominee, winning the musical/comedy motion picture award in 1975 for her portrayal in “The Three Musketeers,” which also starred Faye Dunaway and Charlton Heston.

On her first day on set, Faye Dunaway approached Raquel Welch, all dressed up and looking adorable. Dunaway said, “Darling, I’m a fan of yours. But everyone’s expecting us to get into a fight, so let’s play along.” Everyone was surprised when they started complimenting each other instead.

Welch quickly became a sex symbol in 1966 when she wore a deer skin bikini in the movie “One Million Years B.C.”, however, she saw herself differently than how others viewed her.

She said, “I got a break and I wanted to pursue a career, but I didn’t see myself as a sex symbol. I couldn’t just say ‘no’ and do Shakespeare instead.” In 1995, she was named one of the “100 Sexiest Stars in Film History” by Empire magazine and Hugh Hefner, founder of Playboy, said she was the “woman that I most wanted to have in the magazine” because she seemed “ageless.”

Welch received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1994 and had a memorable role on the 1997 “Seinfeld” episode “The Summer of George.” Her last movie role was in 2017’s “How to Be a Latin Lover” and her last TV credit was also in 2017, “Date My Dad.”

Later in life, she had success with her HAIRuWEAR wig collection.

After being out of the spotlight for over two years, Welch was spotted at the Heritage Auctions building in Beverly Hills in September 2021.

She married her high school sweetheart James Welch in 1959 and had two children, Damon and Latanne “Tahnee,” before they divorced in 1964. She would go on to marry three more times: Patrick Curtis (1967-1972), André Weinfeld (1980-1990), and Richard Palmer (1999-2004).