Frank Sinatra Jr. to dedicate highway marker for Ava Gardner

DURHAM (AP) — Two ceremonies are being held to dedicate a highway marker to actress Ava Gardner, who lived in rural Johnston County before becoming a Hollywood star.

The first is an invitation-only dedication being held Wednesday night at the Carolina Theater in Durham. Frank Sinatra Jr. will unveil the marker after he performs at the theater.

Gardner was married to singer and actor Frank Sinatra for several years in the 1950s. In 1953, she was nominated for an Academy Award for best actress in “Mogambo.” Other movies included “The Barefoot Contessa” and “The Sun Also Rises.”

A public dedication will be held Friday beside Sunset Memorial Park in Smithfield, where Gardner was buried. She died in 1990 in London.

Smithfield also is home to the Ava Gardner Museum.

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