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Avalon says he's glad Funicello's suffering is over

April 9, 2013 at 2:27 PM   |   Comments

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NEW YORK, April 9 (UPI) -- U.S. actor and singer Frankie Avalon says it makes him smile to know his late friend and co-star Annette Funicello is at peace after years of suffering.

Funicello, 70, died Monday due to complications from multiple sclerosis, a disease she battled for decades.

Avalon, who starred with Funicello in a string of iconic beach party films, said he first became aware she had the disease when they were working on their 1987 reunion film, "Back to the Beach," but her condition only got worse from there.

"For at least the past six, seven years, she was without communication. It was a terrible existence," Avalon told TV's "Inside Edition."

"It makes me smile to know that she's up there dancing and singing and having a good time."

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