Georgia Engel — who rose to fame as soft-spoken Georgette Franklin on The Mary Tyler Moore Show — died on Friday in Princeton, N.J., at the age of 70.
“She was truly an angel and blessed us with love, laughter, and grace,” Jackie Stander, her friend and agent tells EW. “Her and her family request prayers in her name from Christian Scientist, Mary Baker Eddy, as they have a closed family funeral. She passed on Friday, April 12, 2019.”
Engel’s friend and executor John Quilty says the cause was undetermined because the actress, who was a Christian Scientist, did not consult doctors, The New York Times reported Monday.
The actress has said her MTM role was meant to be a one-episode guest spot, but Engel went on to appear in almost 60 episodes of the top-rated comedy. After MTM ended in 1977, she continued to work with costar Betty White on The Betty White Show and, more recently, on Hot in Cleveland.
“GEORGIA was one of a kind,” White, 97, tells EW in a written statement. “The absolute best!”
Over the decades she appeared on everything from The Love Boat to Mork & Mindy to Fantasy Island to Coach to Passions. She had a recurring role on Everybody Loves Raymond from 2003 to 2005, and was nominated for an Emmy each of the three seasons she appeared on the sitcom. (She previously received two nominations for her work on MTM.)
Most recently, she appeared on a 2018 episode of Netflix’s recently canceled One Day at a Time.
Reporting by Gerrad Hall and Mike Miller.