Cheers actress Kirstie Alley recently passed away at the age of 71. According to her rep, she had colon cancer leading up to her death. The actress’ children, True and Lillie Parker, also added that their mother discovered the ailment quite late.
“We are sad to inform you that our incredible, fierce and loving mother has passed away after a battle with cancer, only recently discovered,” True and Lillie posted on their mother’s Twitter account. “She was surrounded by her closest family and fought with great strength, leaving us with a certainty of her never-ending joy of living and whatever adventures lie ahead.”
“Our mother’s zest and passion for life, her children, grandchildren and her many animals, not to mention her eternal joy of creating, were unparalleled and leave us inspired to live life to the fullest just as she did,” Alley’s children continued, on their announcement of her passing.
“We thank you for your love and prayers and ask that you respect our privacy at this difficult time. With love always, True and Lillie Parker.”
Cheers co-star, Ted Danson paid a heartfelt tribute in a statement to Fox Digital, sending his love to True and Lillie and calling her a “mother with a heart of gold.”
“I was on a plane today and did something I rarely do. I watched an old episode of ‘Cheers.’ It was the episode where Tom Berenger proposes to Kirstie, who keeps saying no, even though she desperately wants to say yes. Kirstie was truly brilliant in it,” Danson wrote.
“Her ability to play a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown was both moving and hysterically funny. She made me laugh 30 years ago when she shot that scene, and she made me laugh today just as hard. As I got off the plane, I heard that Kirstie had died. I am so sad and so grateful for all the times she made me laugh.”
Alley’s Mark on Hollywood
Alley’s breakout role playing Rebecca Howe in Cheers got her a Golden Globe and an Emmy. The sitcom ran for eleven seasons, from 1987 to 1993, and Alley starred alongside Ted Danson, Woody Harrelson, and Rhea Perlman. Alley also earned additional Golden Globe and Emmy nominations for her lead role in the 1997 NBC sitcom Veronica’s Closet.
The actress also toplined the Look Who’s Talking movies alongside co-star and old flame John Travolta, who also wrote a heartfelt tribute to her via Instagram. “Kirstie was one of the most special relationships I’ve ever had. I love you Kirstie. I know we will see each other again,” Travolta, 68, wrote.
Chmerkovskiy, her Dancing With The Stars partner, also shared a photo of himself and Alley on stage with a note calling her “one of the most unique persons” he’s ever met. “I thought you’d be around forever. I wish we spoke often. Thank you for everything. I love you Kirstie Alley. RIP,” he closed his caption.