Sharon Marie Tate was born on January 24, 1943 in Dallas, Texas to Paul and Doris Tate. Tate’s siblings consisted of two girls, Deborah and Patricia. At the age of only six months, Tate won “Miss Tiny Tot of Dallas, Texas”. The family moved many times while Tate was young because of her father’s career in the military. As a teen, Tate won beauty pageants including “Miss Richland, Washington” and “Miss Autorama”. In 1962, Tate’s father was transferred to Italy where she attended Vincenza American High School. On the set of a movie, Tate met actor Richard Beymer who encouraged Tate to pursue a career in acting. Soon after she appeared as an extra in the movie “Barabbas” which starred Anthony Quinn.
Upon returning back to the United States, Sharon Tate’s father was stationed in San Pedro, California. Tate would often hitchhike to Hollywood to pursue a career in acting. Tate obtained an agent and shortly after began appearing in commercials for Santa Fe Cigarette and Chevrolet. In 1963, Tate appeared in two episodes of the television series, “Mister Ed”. The following year Sharon Tate was cast in a film called “The Americanization of Emily” which starred James Coburn and Julie Andrews. In 1965, Tate made a guest appearance on the television series, “The Man from U.N.C.L.E” with Robert Vaughn. That same year Sharon Tate starred as “Janet Trego” in the show known as “The Beverly Hillbillies” with Buddy Ebsen and Donna Douglas. During this time Tate started a romance with a Hollywood hairstylist by the name of Jay Sebring. In 1966, Tate was cast in the horror movie, “Eye of the Devil” which also starred Deborah Kerr and Donald Pleasense. In 1967, Tate won the role of “Sarah Shagal” in the film “Dance of the Vampires” which was directed by Roman Polanski. Soon after Tate and Polanski became involved and she broke things off with Sebring and Tate continued to stay friends with the hairstylist. The same year brought about the films, “Don’t Make Waves” with Tony Curtis and playing the character of “Jennifer North Polar” in “Valley of the Dolls” with Patty Duke and Barbara Parkins. On January 20, 1968 Tate married boyfriend, Roman Polanski and soon after became pregnant. In 1969, she starred in “The Wrecking Crew” with Dean Martin. During that same year, Sharon Tate would film her last movie called “12 + 1” with Orson Welles.
On August 8, 1969, with only two weeks before giving birth, Sharon Tate was brutally murdered in her Beverly Hills home along with four other victims. They were Jay Sebring, Wojciech Frykowski, heir to the Folgers Coffee fortune, Abigail Folger along with Steve Parent who was only 18 years old. Susan Atkins, Charles Manson, Charles “Tex” Watson, Patricia Krenwinkel and Linda Kasabian were all involved in the crime. Kasabian testified against the four in exchange for immunity. Atkins, Manson, Watson and Krenwinkel all received a death sentence but it later commuted to life in prison. Sharon Tate died at the young age of only 26 years old. Sharon Tate is currently buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Los Angeles, California.