Tributes pour in for ‘cultural icon’ Betty White | Way of life
Who didn’t like Betty White?
As news of the iconic comedian’s death at her Los Angeles home became public on Friday, appreciation has poured in from all corners of the country.
The 99-year-old actress – a legend of film, television, and razor-sharp comedic timing – has had an age-defying career that spanned nearly eight decades. From her appearance on a radio show as a child, to her role in the iconic 1970s series “The Mary Tyler Moore Show”, to her appearance as a stage thief in the 2009 film “The Proposal”, the comedy de White never got old. But it was her role as the ever-sunny Rose Nylund in the NBC comedy “The Golden Girls” that made the actress a national treasure.
White, who reveled in her status as a senior stateswoman, was only weeks away from her 100th birthday on January 17. In a recent People magazine cover marking the next milestone, White said she was “very lucky to be so healthy and to feel so good at this age … It’s amazing.”
For years, Ryan Reynolds, co-star of White’s “The Proposal,” joked that the nonagenarian was his “ex-girlfriend.” White joked with People in an article published Wednesday that “he can’t get over his thing for me, but Robert Redford is The One.”
On Friday, Reynolds reflected on his passing.
“The world is different now,” he wrote in an Instagram post. “She was good at defying expectations. She managed to get very old and somehow not old enough. We will miss you, Betty.”
Comedian Kathy Griffin, who worked with White on the sitcom “Suddenly Susan” and her reality show “Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List,” wrote on Twitter that White “actually treated me like a equal in the world of comedy gurrrl. She was as lively and funny as she was sweet and wise … and no matter how long this world continues to spin, there will only be one Betty White. “
“Bridesmaids” director Paul Feig called White a “genius” and, like many others on social media, lamented the news of her death on the last day of an already tumultuous year: “Dude, 2021, you just couldn’t walk out without a punch in the face again, could you? ” he wrote. “It’s hard to imagine a world without her. It’ll be a much less funny place, that’s for sure.”
Talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, who has had the “Golden Girls” star on her show several times over the years, wrote on Twitter that the actress had lived “an exceptional life” and that she was “grateful for every second I was able to spend with Betty White.”
But it wasn’t just individuals and celebrities who felt White’s impact. Networks such as Comedy Central and Netflix have dedicated tweets to White, as have advocacy groups like GLAAD. White was a longtime advocate for the LGBTQ community and participated in one of GLAAD’s anti-bullying campaigns in 2013, joking that she should change her name to Betty Purple as a sign of support. On Friday, the organization shouted “supporter of LGBTQ equality and acceptance” and, borrowing a line from the theme song “Golden Girls”, thanked White for “being a friend.”
Dictionary.com also paid tribute to the actress, simply tweeting the word “golden” and adding a fourth definition: “Betty White”.