Golden Girls Star & Beloved Comedian Betty White Passes Away, Age 99

Less than three weeks before the beloved actress and comedy icon would've celebrated her 100th birthday, TMZ is reporting from law enforcement sources that The Golden Girls star Betty White has passed away in her home. While best known for her role as Rose Nylund in The Golden Girls from 1985 to 1992, White has been a permanent fixture in folks' homes and across the pop culture landscape for decades. Beginning her career in 1939, the trailblazing media icon would be a major part of television history for over the past 80 years. Getting her start on radio in the '40s on shows such as Blondie, The Great Gildersleeve, and This is Your FBI, white would go on to accomplish what very few women were given the chance to do at the time: her own radio program. But it would be 1949's TV variety show Hollywood on Television (which she would go on to co-host) that would help serve as a springboard to a hall of fame career in television.

"Even though Betty was about to be 100, I thought she would live forever," White's agent Jeff Witjas said in a statement. "I will miss her terribly and so will the animal world that she loved so much. I don't think Betty ever feared passing because she always wanted to be with her most beloved husband Allen Ludden. She believed she would be with him again."

Betty White at The 2005 Writers Guild Awards, Hollywood Palladium, Los Angeles, CA, February 19, 2005, photo by Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com.
Betty White at The 2005 Writers Guild Awards, Hollywood Palladium, Los Angeles, CA, February 19, 2005, photo by Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com.

Just take a look at White's filmography to see the influence she had on generations. Just a small sample of the shows she appeared in include Life with Elizabeth, Date with the Angels, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Betty White Show, The Love Boat, Mama's Family, The Golden Palace, Ladies Man, That '70s Show, Higglytown Heroes, Boston Legal, The Bold and the Beautiful, Pound Puppies, and Hot in Cleveland– shows that prove just how influential White was as a performer. Nearly as long as White's filmography is her list of awards & accomplishments based on her body of work. Past recognitions have included multiple Emmy Awards wins, as well as winning several Screen Actors Guild Awards and a Grammy Award for a comedy album.

"Don't try to be young. Just open your mind. Stay interested in stuff. There are so many things I won't live long enough to find out about, but I'm still curious about them," offered White in an interview explaining the importance of opening oneself to new experiences no matter one's age. "You know people who are already saying, 'I'm going to be 30 – oh, what am I going to do?' Well, use that decade! Use them all!"

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About Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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