She was the product of the movie icons’ secret affair while they filmed The Call of the Wild in 1935, when Gable was married. Young flew to Europe in a bid to hide her pregnancy.
Lewis was born the following November and eventually dropped off at an orphanage in California, so her mother could return to work.
Two years later, Young picked the child up and announced she had adopted the little girl, prompting Lewis to believe the actress wasn’t her biological mum.
Lewis grew up and entered the world of entertainment herself, appearing in popular TV shows General Hospital, The Doctors and The Secret Storm, before signing on as a scriptwriter on longrunning U.S. series Search for Tomorrow.
Curious about the identity of her real parents, Lewis confronted Young upon reaching adulthood and the truth was revealed. The silver screen star agreed to open up about her secret in her authorised biography on the condition it was published after her death, but Lewis went public with the news in her memoir first, causing a rift between her and her mother.
She later reconciled with her mum, who passed away in 2000.
Lewis died of lymphoma (lymph node cancer) at her home in Pennsylvania on 25 November (11).