The unapologetic Queen of Burlesque, Blaze Starr, passed away on Monday in her hometown of Wilsondale, W. Virginia at the age of 83. Best known for her romantic ties with former Louisiana Governor Earl K. Long, which inspired the movie Blaze, Starr spent three decades on stage electrifying audiences with her burlesque performances. “Society thought that to be a stripper was to be a prostitute,” Ms. Starr told The New York Times back when the movie debuted in 1989. “But I always felt that I was an artist, entertaining. I was at ease being a stripper. I kept my head held high, and if there is such a thing as getting nude with class, then I did it.” Starr, born with the name Fannie Belle Fleming, also claims to have had an affair with John F. Kennedy.
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