Facts about Dorothy Kilgallen
Dorothy Kilgallen Biography
Journalist and TV personality Dorothy Kilgallen was nearly forgotten for decades, until resurrected by the curious to play a minor role in the story John F. Kennedy’s assassination.
Kilgallen was a go-getter journalist, following her father into the newspaper business in New York when she was just out of high school.
By the time she was 25, she was nationally famous, thanks largely to a “race around the world” stunt (she was the only woman in the race) she turned into a book in 1936.
Kilgallen was given a daily newspaper column in 1938, “The Voice of Broadway,” where she passed on gossip items and commented on New York and national issues.
After World War II and until her death, Kilgallen was a celebrity known to New Yorkers for her newspaper column (also nationally syndicated) and her radio program with her actor husband (Richard Kollmar), Breakfast with Dorothy and Dick.
Nationally, Kilgallen was known to American television viewers for her weekly turn as a celebrity panelist on the game show What’s My Line?
On November 7, 1965, Kilgallen came home from broadcasting What’s My Line? late at night. She was found dead the next morning, alone in bed.
The official word is that she’d died accidentally from combining barbiturates (Seconal) with alcohol (vodka).
Questions around her death stem from stories that she had told her friends she was about to reveal the real story behind the president’s assassination — Kilgallen apparently believed the Warren Commission’s conclusion was wrong.
Kilgallen’s notes on her interviews with Jack Ruby were never found, and later tests on preserved fluids showed the presence of three types of barbiturates in her system, adding fuel to speculation that her death was mysterious and not pedestrian.
Attempts to exhume her body have so far proved unsuccessful.