'Facts of Life' Star Charlotte Rae Dies at 92

Herb Ball  NBC  NBCU

Herb Ball NBC NBCU

She disclosed a year ago that she was battling bone cancer.

In 1961 she became a semi-regular on the New York-based cop sitcom "Car 54, Where Are You?" as the wife of the NYPD officer played by future "Munsters" grandpa Al Lewis.

Initially set at a girls' boarding school, that NBC series ran for nine seasons.

On the way up, Rae rubbed elbows with all the up-and-coming talents of the time, she even roomed with actress Cloris Leachman who would also later play the den mother role on "Facts" after Rae left the show in 1986.

Mrs. Garrett began on the show "Diff'rent Strokes" (1978-84.) She also briefly reprised the role on the shore-lived "Hello, Larry".

During her long career, which spanned over six decades, Rae appeared in dozens of movies, TV shows and stage productions - which earned her two Tony Award nominations in 1966 and 1989 for her roles in Pickwick and Morning, Noon and Night respectively.

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Rae acted well into her 80s and appeared on the big screen as recently as 2015, alongside Meryl Streep, Kevin Kline and Rick Springfield in "Ricki and the Flash".

Viewers quickly fell in love with Mrs. Garrett, who also served as a wise yet sharp-tongued mentor to the young women on "The Facts of Life".

The actress released a memoir in 2015 called "The Facts of My Life" in which she recounted the challenges faced by her family.

Mindy Cohn, who played Natalie Green on The Facts of Life, wrote a tribute to the late actress on Instagram. I love life. I've had a wonderful one already. When she announced her diagnosis, she admitted that she was first diagnosed with the pancreatic cancer seven years earlier, but was able to go into remission after chemotherapy treatments without the public knowing.

According to Entertainment Tonight, Rae is survived by her sister, Miriam Guten, and her son, Larry. "I don't want her to be Polly Perfect, because she must have human failings and make mistakes".

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