By Linda Culpepper
Gloria “Pall” Pallatz was born in Brooklyn, New York, on July 15, 1927, to Jewish parents who had moved from England to America. The Great Depression began in 1929 and plunged the family into hard times. It became evident at a young age that Gloria, who loved to perform for the neighbors, was a natural entertainer and had a strong sense of fun and adventure — and big dreams.
By the time she was a teenager in the early 1940s, glamorous billboards, and the wolf whistles from the boys on the corner, made Gloria want to be a model. She won a local beauty contest in 1947 that changed her life and put her on the path to fulfilling her dreams, and more.
Gloria worked hard and made a name for herself in commercials, as a magazine cover girl, a showgirl in Las Vegas, and a television and film actress. Though she never reached “star” billing, she was one of the more beautiful actresses of the Golden Age of Hollywood and had many memorable smaller roles and cameo appearances alongside many of the biggest film and television stars of the day, like Elvis, Kirk Douglas, Robert Mitchum, Donald O’Connor, Burt Lancaster, Shirley Jones, James Mason, and more.
Doing comedy and skits were a natural for Gloria and she played opposite Bob Hope, Eddie Cantor, Milton Beryl, Abbot & Costello, and Danny Thomas. She went twice with Bob Hope to entertain the troops in Korea (and made stops to visit her relatives in England). When her acting career began slowing down, she became a real estate broker and set up a glamorous office on Hollywood Boulevard that catered to the stars. Such were the days of her youth.
In 1965, she married Allen Kane, the owner of a successful car dealership, and took on the very best role of her life — mother — when her son, Jefferson Kane, was born. In her later years, she was still very full of life and as fashionable as ever. She had plans to write several more books to add to the 15 she had already written.
Gloria loved to make personal appearances and reminisce with fans, both young and old, who would come to see her at movie and television memorabilia shows, Elvis and Twilight Zone conventions, and other special events. A 1959 episode of The Twilight Zone was one of her last TV roles. Gloria died of heart failure at the age of 85 on Dec. 30, 2012, in a Burbank hospital, with her son by her side. Part of Gloria’s legacy is her genuine interest in everyone she encountered and her generous nature.