Jill Ireland was born in London, England on April 24, 1936. All throughout her life, she was confronted by tragedies that threatened to overwhelm her. Married in 1957 to actor David McCallum, famous for his role in the television show "Man From UNCLE", the couple had three sons, one of whom, Jason, was adopted from a teenage mother. Jill Ireland is perhaps best known to modern readers as the wife of actor Charles Bronson, whom she had married in 1968. Her adopted son Jason became addicted to heroin, and would die of a drug overdose in 1989. His death would make Jill a vocal anti-drug activist for the final year of her life. Ireland openly admitted that she should have acknowledged Jason's problems sooner, and that if she had, perhaps she could have saved him.
Jill Ireland was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1984, and she decided to undergo a mastectomy. In 1987, Ireland served as the chairperson of the National Cancer Society. She battled the disease for six years, until it finally took her life in 1990.
Ireland began her career as a dancer at the age of 12, and made her film debut in the movie "Oh, Rosalind" in 1955. In 1962, Ireland and McCallum would move to Hollywood, California where he was scheduled to star in the film "The Great Escape", with Charles Bronson, and it was here that Jill Ireland met the man who would be her second husband.
This report prepared by Nathaniel Ford