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March 13,  2018   -   Hollywood Reporter  /   Elvis Express Radio
Donna Butterworth, a charming child actress and singer in the 1960s who co-starred with Elvis Presley in Paradise, Hawaiian Style and with Jerry Lewis in The Family Jewels, has
died. She was 62.

Butterworth died March 6 at the Hilo Medical Center in Hilo, Hawaii, after a long, unspecified illness, Guadalupe Erece Jr., funeral director at Dodo Mortuary and Crematory, told The
Hollywood Reporter.

She was 9 and already a showbiz veteran when she got the call to film with Elvis. By then, she had performed with entertainer Don Ho; released two singles, “Sailor Boy” and
“California Sunshine Boy”, appeared on “The Dean Martin Show,” “The Andy Williams Show” and “The Danny Kaye Show” and garnered a Golden Globe nomination for most
promising newcomer for her role in the 1965 Jerry Lewis comedy “The Family Jewels.”

In “Paradise, Hawaiian Style,” Butterworth played Jan Kohana, daughter of the business partner of Elvis’ character.
Butterworth sang several duets with the King of Rock ’n’ Roll and gained a cult following.

In 1966, 10-year-old Donna Butterworth co-starred in “Paradise, Hawaiian Style,” the second Elvis film set in Hawaii. Donna Butterworth and Elvis in Paradise, Hawiian Style

“My mom and dad took me to see ‘Blue Hawaii’ when I was just a little girl and I fell in love with him right then and there,” said Donna. “I used to listen to his records and I couldn’t get
enough Elvis.”

Donna recalls filming her first scene on the cliffs of Makapuu on Oahu.

“I had to run up into Elvis’s arms and call out, ‘Uncle Rick, Uncle Rick.’ But I had only met him a few minutes before that. So when the director called ‘action,’ I ran up and got in his
arms and his face was about four inches from my face. After all the anticipation of meeting Elvis Presley and working with him, I just froze. I couldn’t believe I was so close to this
beautiful man. All the crew cracked up because they knew I was so enamored. In fact, Elvis laughed the hardest – he just loved to laugh.”

Sadly her acting career was short-lived only remembered for 'A Boy Called Nuthin’'in 1967 for 'Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color' which also starred Ron Howard.

As an adult, Butterworth sang professionally and recorded a CD in Hawaii in the early 2000s.

A private memorial and celebration of life will be held at a later date.

Butterworth is survived by her mother and brother..

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