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Ann Turner Cook, original Gerber baby, dies aged 95 – Boston News, Weather, Sports

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Ann Turner Cook, whose angelic baby face was known worldwide as the original Gerber baby, has died. She was 95.

Gerber announced Cook’s death in an Instagram post on Friday.

“Many years before she became an extraordinary mother, teacher and writer, her smile and expressive curiosity won hearts everywhere and will live on as a symbol for all babies,” the company said.

Cook was 5 months old when a neighbor, artist Dorothy Hope Smith, drew a charcoal sketch of her that was later entered into a competition Gerber ran for a national baby food marketing campaign.

The image was so successful that it became the company’s trademark in 1931 and has been used on all packaging and advertising ever since.

For decades, however, the baby’s identity was kept secret, fueling rumors as to who it was, with conjectures including Humphrey Bogart and Elizabeth Taylor.

In the late 1970s, it was revealed to be Cook, who grew up in Tampa, Florida as an English teacher and later a crime writer.

Cook told The Associated Press in a 1998 interview that her mother told her when she was young that she was the baby in the illustration.

She said, “If you want to be an icon for something, what could be nicer than a baby food icon?”

As for the picture itself, she said: “All babies are appealing. The reason drawing is so popular is because the artist captured the attraction that all babies have.”

(Copyright (c) 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, transcribed or redistributed.)

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https://whdh.com/news/ann-turner-cook-original-gerber-baby-dies-at-95/ Ann Turner Cook, original Gerber baby, dies aged 95 – Boston News, Weather, Sports

Nate Jones

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