Brooke Shields’ Mother Teri Dies at 79

Teri Shields and Brooke Shields at the Gotham and Hamptons Magazines Celebration with Cover Star Christopher Meloni of Law and Order SVU on August 11, 2007 in East Hampton, New York. Niche Media/

One of Hollywood's most well-known "mom-agers" has passed away.

Teri Shields, the mother and controversial manager of daughter Brooke Shields, passed away at age 79 last Wednesday in Manhattan, a rep for model-actress Brooke, 47, told the New York Times.

Teri is said to have suffered a long illness related to dementia.

A single mother, Teri began finding work for her beautiful daughter when Brooke was just 11 months old, landing her in a Dove soap ad. Brooke was photographed in the nude at age 10, and provoked a scandal when she was cast as a child prostitute in the 1978 film Pretty Baby; Brooke also shot the iconic Calvin Klein jeans ad at age 15, quipping, "nothing comes between me and my Calvins."

In a 1978 TV interview Teri was unapologetic about her daughter's precocious appeal. "They see total innocence, which is totally there. And . . they have the sexy child too, they have the sexy person that appeals to them."

Born in Newark, NJ in 1933, Theresa Anna Lillian Schmon worked as a hairstylist, makeup artist and a model before marrying Francis Alexander Shields in 1964, welcoming her daughter one year later. She and Francis Shields divorced during Brooke's infancy.

Shields didn't offer comment to the New York Times for its obituary, but has spoken of her estrangement and complicated relationship with her mother in the past; as she entered her 20s, Brooke began managing her own acting and modeling career, leading to friction with her mother.

"I grew up in an alcoholic household," she told The New York Times in 1994. "I'm the caretaker who wants to make everything better, and you can just do that for so long, or so I've been told."

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