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Cheryl Holdridge was an American actress, best known as a cast member of the original Mickey Mouse Club.

Holdridge was born Cheryl Lynn Phelps in New Orleans, Louisiana. Her mother, Julie A. Phelps (October 19, 1908 - October 24, 2003), was a former dancer who had performed on Broadway with her partner, Dick Mason; her biological father has not been identified. Julie brought her to Burbank, California shortly after her birth. In 1950 her mother married Herbert Charles Holdridge, a retired Brigadier General active in fringe political movements. He adopted her in 1953 and gave her his surname.Holdridge grew up in Sherman Oaks, California. She started dance lessons from an early age with Joyce Cole in North Hollywood, learning both ballet and tap.

Holdridge first performed professionally at the age of nine, when she landed a role in the New York City Ballet's version of The Nutcracker in Los Angeles. Her first screen appearance was as an uncredited extra in the 1956 film production of Carousel.

She auditioned for The Mickey Mouse Club in the spring of 1956, was hired, and joined the club's "Red Team"--the most visible and popular of the Mouseketeers. Though a good dancer, her weak singing voice kept her in the background of most musical numbers performed by the Mouseketeers. A competent actress with a pleasant speaking voice, she was employed for two of the show's episodic serials: Boys of the Western Sea and Annette.

After the show's run ended, Cheryl returned to Van Nuys High School and graduated from Grant High School with the winter 1961 class. She was cast in two episodes of Leave It to Beaver in 1959 as 'Gloria Cusick'; she later played an occasional, recurring role as Wally Cleaver's girlfriend, Julie Foster.

In May 1960, Holdridge went on a live tour to Australia with other former Mouseketeers. While there, she became involved with Lucky Starr, an Australian singer.She was later linked in fan magazines and gossip columns with many other celebrities, including Elvis Presley.

Holdridge's television career prospects improved from 1960. She made guest appearances on over twenty different shows, including The Rifleman, My Three Sons, Bewitched, Bringing Up Buddy, and The Dick Van Dyke Show. She was also cast in the lead role of Betty in an unsold television series pilot based on the Archie Comics. While still in demand, Holdridge left acting abruptly in 1964 to get married.

After the death of her third husband, Holdridge made a cameo appearance in the 2000 feature film, The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas. In 2005 she appeared at Disneyland for 50th anniversary celebrations of both the opening of the park and The Mickey Mouse Club. More recently, she appeared in televised documentary specials about Cary Grant (2005) and Barbara Hutton (2006), and has also appeared in a special feature interview for a Disney DVD.

While touring Australia in May 1960 with the Mouseketeers, Holdridge was involved in a sex scandal just before her 16th birthday with local teen singer, "Lucky Starr," who was 19.

Holdridge's first husband was sportsman and athlete Lance Reventlow, the only child of Woolworth heiress Barbara Hutton; his father was a Danish count. Reventlow, a pilot, died in the crash of a small plane in 1972.

Her second husband was Albert James "Jim" Skarda. They married in 1974. He ran a car rental service in Aspen, Colorado.

Her third husband, Manning J. Post (January 3, 1918- March 13, 2000), was a major figure in Democratic politics in California. He died of natural causes aged 82.All of her marriages were childless. Holdridge was a long-time supporter of environmental causes and charities, and with her third marriage became more active in fund-raising events.

Holdridge died on January 6, 2009 from lung cancer.


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