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Rosemary Clooney Has Lung Cancer

Rosemary Clooney, the 73-year-old crooner known as “The Girl Singer” in her youth, underwent successful lung cancer surgery at the Mayo Clinic last Friday, January 11. The upper lobe of her left lung was removed.

Clooney was diagnosed with cancer the day before while undergoing a regular physical exam. Her agent, Allen Sviridoff, said Clooney was talking and laughing with her family the day after the surgery. She’s expected to be hospitalized about 10 more days.

It’s unclear whether Clooney will be able to attend the Grammys on February 27, where she was nominated for best traditional pop vocal album for Sentimental Journey: The Girl Singer and Her New Big Band (Concord) and is scheduled to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Clooney’s difficult and colorful life, which included pop stardom in the ’50s, a nervous breakdown and drug additions in the ’60s and a comeback in the late ’70s, is recalled in all its heartbreak in 2000’s Girl Singer: An Autobiography (Broadway Books).

Originally Published