Famed actress and comedian Betty White has passed away just a few weeks before she was set to celebrate her 100th birthday. She was 99.
White rose to fame in Hollywood and spent nearly eight decades in the spotlight. She’s best known for her starring roles on “Golden Girls” and “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” although her filmography spans far beyond the handful of shows for which she’s known.
White passed away at her home in Carmel, California, on Friday (Dec. 31). A spokesperson for the Los Angeles Fire Department told Rolling Stone magazine of the incident, “We responded to a medical aid request. The call was received at 9:33 a.m. We have determined death of an approximately 99-year-old female.”
White would have turned 100 years old on Jan. 17. She even had a major movie event lined up in honor of her birthday, “Betty White: 100 Years Young,” which was slated to feature White sharing fun stories from her career, as well as show classic clips from her filmography. A range of celebrity guests were slated to attend the event, including Jared Leto, Tina Fey, Ryan Reynolds, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Morgan Freeman, Carol Burnett and more.
Speaking with People magazine a few days ago, on Dec. 28, White said, “I’m so lucky to be in such good health and feel so good at this age.” She also said that she was “born a cockeyed optimist” and that she “got it from my mom, and that never changed. I always find the positive.”
As for how she made it to 99, White told People, jokingly, “I try to avoid anything green. I think it’s working.”
White has been nominated for 21 primetime Emmys and won five, her first for her work on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” in 1976 and her most recent for being a guest host on Saturday Night Live in 2010.