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 November 5, 2023

Robbin Bain, 'Today' host, passes away at 87

Robin Bain, NBC-TV's former Today Girl, has passed away at the age of 87. 

The New York Times reports that Bain, who was also known as Robbin Mele Gaudieri, passed away on Oct. 21 in Southampton, New York, on Long Island.

Citing information received from Bain's daughter, Lara McLanahan, the outlet reports that the cause of Bain's death was breast cancer.

Bain's initial claim to fame was probably the 1959 Rheingold beauty pageant. The Times reports:

In 1959, she was elected Miss Rheingold, representing what was then the most popular beer in the New York region and was also sold in Pennsylvania and throughout New England. She defeated five other finalists in an election that the brewer said attracted 24 million votes.

The outlet goes on to write that Bain, as Miss Rheingold, received $50,000, which today would be equivalent to about $530,000. According to the Times, Bain, as Miss Rheingold, also got the opportunity to make appearances in the United States, in Europe, and in newspaper ads.

Later on in life, Bain would fight against the notion that her beauty, in itself, is what earned her this role.

During an interview, in 2000, she told the Daily News, "It was not a body thing. Personality and wholesomeness were very important. You had to look very approachable to the guys sitting at the bar or going to the supermarket."

Bain, throughout her career, would have several other modeling-type gigs, including for Helena Rubinstein and Revlon. She was also one of the women who introduced Jackie Gleason during episodes of The Jackie Gleason Show that ran in 1956 and 1957.

Then, a few years later, in 1961, Bain became NBC TV's Today Girl. 

For those unfamiliar with the role, it has been held by some famous individuals, including, perhaps most notably, Barabar Walters. The role has been described as a stereotypically feminine role, which is why many have been critical of it.

In this role, Bain worked alongside John Chancellor and Frank Blair. And, Bain, as opposed to others, such as Walters, said that she enjoyed it. Bane would go on to become a co-host.

Bain would leave NBC when she was pregnant with her daughter. The took place after Bain had been on the show for only two months, which, at the time, led to rumors that she did not like the gig. But, those rumors were quashed after it was learned that she left only because of the pregnancy.

Later on in life, Bain would go on to become an interior designer.

The U.S. Sun reports, "Bain is survived by her daughter, her husband Alexander Guadieri, a stepson, and six grandchildren."

Written By:
Oliver Winters

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