Duff Is Dead After Stunt Accident

July 20, 2007
Emily Villanueva

Hilary Duff died yesterday afternoon after a fatal stunt accident went horribly wrong. She was 19. The multitalented teen idol best known for her role in the Disney Channel Original series “Lizzie Maguire,” had legions of adoring fans, now saddened by the news of her sudden death.

“She was the sweetest person I’ve ever known,” said Hilary’s mother, Susan Duff. “My life just doesn’t seem the same without her presence.”

Known for her squeaky clean image, Hilary Duff was Hollywood’s “good girl,” a refreshingly refined celebrity amidst a crowd known for their spotlight-grabbing, hard-partying ways. She was rarely, if ever, found in the tabloids like her peers. She refrained from alcohol and drugs, and never went to rehab. She was uncommonly mature for her age, and has been called a “true professional.”

Born Hilary Erhard Duff in the city of Houston, Texas on September 28 1987, the future popstar began her career as an entertainer while touring with the Cechetti Ballet in San Antonio. The daughter of Bob and Susan Duff, she was encouraged by her parents to take acting classes at a young age. She relocated with her mother and sister to California to pursue acting while their father stayed in Houston to manage his business.

Upon arrival to Los Angeles, Hilary acted in a slew of television commercials and miniseries. Her first big role was as Wendy in the direct-to-video film Casper Meets Wendy. Although the movie met stale reviews, it did garner attention from Disney executives who were looking for a girl to play the clumsy but lovable heroine of their new show, Lizzie Maguire. After they sought her out, she auditioned and won the part. It was a career breakthrough for her. The series was a major success, making her the poster girl for tweens everywhere and spurning a movie version of the television show.

Duff went on to become a successful actress and singer. Her films include Agent Cody Banks, Cheaper By the Dozen, A Cinderella Story, Raise Your Voice, and Material Girls. She recorded four albums, including her most famous, Metamorphosis, which reached number one on the U.S. and Canadian charts and released hit singles such as “So Yesterday” and “Come Clean.” She continuously fought for respect in the music world by changing her sound with each CD, from pop-rock to edgy-rock to dance.
Her last two films, War, Inc. and Foodfight! will be released in movie theatres posthumously. A “true professional,” Hilary Duff will surely be missed.

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