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Beloved ‘The Brady Bunch’ TV mom Florence Henderson has died at 82 of heart failure

So very sad about this.

One of the most lovely, most lively women that I’ve ever had the joy of knowing as an entertainment reporter has died.

Florence Henderson died or heart failure today at the age of 82 surrounded by her family.

She seemed decades younger with her youthful appearance and energy and wonderful spirit so this comes as a shock.

She’s of course best known as Carol Brady on the The Brady Bunch from 1969-74 and its subsequent incarnations as The Brady Bunch Variety Hour, the sitcom The Brady Brides and the drama The Bradys.

But before the show she was a huge Broadway star and also a regular on NBC’s The Today Show.

Henderson was a longtime staunch supporter of the LGBT community and two years ago she told me she thought a show like The Brady Bunch could have helped families had it included a positive gay storyline.

‘I think so many young people have such a difficult time,’ she said. ‘Most of the gay people I know – and I have so many gay and lesbian friends – so many tell me they were disowned and how tough it was for them growing up.

‘And all of them, they all knew they were gay from the time they were 5 or 6 years old. The kids that have no place to go and the parents don’t get it, don’t understand stand and stop loving them. How can you do that to a child?’

I last spoke to her at the 2014 Los Angeles LGBT Center’s 45th anniversary gala.

‘I do so many benefits for the LGBT community – always have,’ she said that night. ‘When AIDS first started, I was one of the first along with Debbie Reynolds to do a benefit – many, many years ago at The Hollywood Bowl. It was not easy to get people.

‘I just think I love people and have great compassion for human beings. Who are we to judge anyone. It always came natural for me to love people.’

She will be so, so missed.

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2 Remarks

  1. This is so sad! I woke up this morning and could’ve believe what I was reading. She was my all-time favorite TV mom and a wonderful person. I remember back in the early days when she criticized Anita Bryant for her anti-gay campaign. Florence Henderson was one of the few celebrities who spoke up when it was unpopular and risky to do so.

    Bless this beautiful woman. May she rest in peace.

  2. November 26th, 2016 at 3:12 am
    Russ Wellington says:

    What a talented and wonderful persom. Such an icon for positive living. She will be missed.

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