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Bob Hope's Niece, Avis Anne Hope Eckelberry, Dies at 56

She grew up in Toluca Lake and died of ovarian cancer. Services to be held Saturday at St. Charles Borromeo.

Avis Anne Hope Eckelberry, an accomplished film editor who grew up in Toluca Lake and worked with her uncle,, died in Los Angeles on Saturday, July 14, due to complications relating to ovarian cancer. She was 56.

She worked as an editor on films such as "The Last Boy Scout," "Mr. Saturday Night," "Super Mario Brothers," "The Flintstones," "Cobb" and "Forget Paris."

She was a tap dancer and under the name of Avis Hope appeared with her uncle in the movie "Eight on the Lam," which co-starred Phyllis Diller and .

See the Variety obit for more of her credits.

Avis was born to George and Mary Hope in Columbus, Ohio and the family soon moved to Los Angeles where George worked with his brother Bob on show business projects. In fact, George and Mary met through her own brother, Bob Hope’s early collaborator, George Byrne.

Growing up in the Toluca Lake district of North Hollywood, Avis was trained as a tap dancer and performed as a teenager. She went on to work as a physical trainer and athletic coordinator for fashion manufacturer Esprit in San Francisco.

Screenwriter Floyd Mutrux introduced Avis to film editing. In 1995, Avis married technology executive Riggs Eckelberry and devoted the rest of her life to helping him with his career and raising their son, George Hope Eckelberry, now 14. She is also survived by her brothers Harry and Jesse.

Services will be held this Saturday at 10 a.m. at the chapel in North Hollywood, and on Sunday at 11 a.m. at Celebrity Centre in Hollywood. Donations may be made to Delphi Academy of Los Angeles (www.delphila.com).

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