Her real name is Doris Mary Ann Von Kappelhoff and was born to German Catholic parents in April 3, 1924 in Cincinnati, Ohio. She had a brother Richard, who died before she was born and Paul, a few years older than her. Her father and mother split when she was about eight. At twelve, she had a dance act with with a boy called Jerry Doherty, with whom -- after winning $500 in a talent contest -- she went to Hollywood. On returning to Cincinatti, aged fourteen, Doris was in a terrible car crash which almost ended her dancing career.
At the age of sixteen, Doris then discovered that she could sing and the would be dancer became a singer. She began singing with Bob Crosby's band and later on began touring with the Les Brown Band, where she met Al Jorden, who she later married. Al turned out to be a violent man and soon after the birth of her son Terry in 1942, she initiated divorce proceedings. In 1946, after entertaining the troops for a couple of years, she met and married George Weidler, this liason lasted only eight months.
She sang with Frank Sinatra on the "Saturday Night Hit Parade" and both Frank Sinatra and Artie Shaw encouraged her to try acting. In 1948 she made her first film, "Romance On The High Seas", and in 1949 she hit the market with the popular hit "Bewitched". Whilst filming for Warner Brothers, she met Marty Melcher, former husband of Patty Andrews of the Andrews Sisters, who became her agent and later, on her 27th birthday, her husband. In 1958 her brother Paul died and it was around this time that Marty started to make her sign to do films that she did not want to. This eventually led to Doris becoming ill from nervous exhaustion. By the time that Marty died in 1968, Doris was bankrupt and owed thousands of dollars, but she was eventually awarded $22 million by the Courts. She married for the fourth time to Barry Comden in 1976 and since her divorce in 1980 has devoted her life to animals.