Actress Mary Tyler Moore had been on the National Enquirer’s death watch for a long time now. You might have noticed they do their death watch covers a lot these days.
Older Americans will surely have some fond memories of MTM. Younger folks probably have no idea who she is.
Like most Hollywood people, she had her causes. Hers were animals, a cause I share, and diabetes, which she suffered from. If she had been young and vital last Saturday, I can’t picture her participating in the obscenity that slanders all women that was called the Women’s March.
Aging is not a nice thing to see, as the progression of pictures above, show. But as the Bible tells us, God’s plan will take its course.
Sitcom sweetheart Mary Tyler Moore, who gained fame playing winsome television producer Mary Richards on the popular 1970s television series “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and broke new ground as an independent career-woman in a leading role, died on Wednesday.
“Today, beloved icon, Mary Tyler Moore, passed away at the age of 80 in the company of friends and her loving husband of over 33 years, Dr. S. Robert Levine,” her rep Mara Buxbaum said in a statement. “A groundbreaking actress, producer, and passionate advocate for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Mary will be remembered as a fearless visionary who turned the world on with her smile.”
Although her name was most frequently associated with television, Moore also acted in theater and films, winning a Best Actress Academy Award nomination for her role as an icy mother in 1980’s “Ordinary People.”
Off camera, she was known as a longtime animal rights champion and a spokesperson for diabetes issues after being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, a life-threatening illness, when she was 33.
In 2011, Moore underwent four hours of surgery to remove a meningioma, or benign tumor of the lining tissue of the brain.
Following that, there were reports her health had been deteriorating due to ongoing problems with diabetes, that she had lost weight and had become frail with severe mobility problems, but in 2011 and 2013 she returned to TV to appear twice on TV Land’s “Hot in Cleveland.”
In her two most famous television roles – as Mary Richards and as Dick Van Dyke’s wife, Laura Petrie, in “The Dick Van Dyke Show” – Moore always appeared smiling, optimistic and perky.
But in real life, she battled a series of personal challenges in addition to her diabetes: an alcoholic mother, two divorces, the death of her son and her own bout with alcoholism.
To most of her television fans, she was always “Mary,” the earnest WJM-TV producer who achieved breakthrough status by being one of the very first unmarried, career-woman leading characters – in her 30s, living and working on her own, and not looking for a husband.
Yet independent as her character was, Mary Richards was never threatening. “I’m an experienced woman,” she said in one episode. “I’ve been around…well, all right. I might not have been around but I’ve been…nearby.”