Actress Estelle Getty passed away this morning at the age of 84 after a long battle with dementia, reports the Associated Press. Getty was best known for her role on NBC's The Golden Girls.
When it debuted in 1985, The Golden Girls bucked television trends obsessed with the young and gorgeous by focusing instead on a group of senior women shacked up in Miami, Florida. But instead of just talking about moth balls, the weather, and hard candy, the ladies in the show tackled the sort of subjects everyone discusses, making it all the more funny.
Beatrice Arthur, Betty White, and Rue McClanahan headlined the comedy, having had previous fame on other projects, but the real show-stealer was Getty. The quick-talking actress played the wisecracking Sophia Petrillo, the 80-year-old mother of Arthur's Dorothy, getting nominated for seven Emmys and winning one in the process. She also won a Razzie award for her supporting role in Sly Stallone's Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot.
She allegedly was turned down for the role of Sophia after being told she looked to young to play the role, but eventually had a make-up artist help her transform a few decades older than she actually was.
Getty was surrounded by friends and family at the time of her passing.