We regret to report upon the passing of yet another beloved entertainer today. Rue McClanahan, the Emmy-Award winning star of The Golden Girls, died on June 3, 2010, following a stroke she suffered two days earlier. She was 76.
McClanahan got her start on Broadway, before proceeding to daytime soap operas in 1970. Her first major role was in 1972, when she portrayed Vivian Harmon, best friend and next-door neighbor, on the hit series, Maude, a role she would play for for six years. The actress resurfaced on prime-time in 1983, playing Fran Crowley on the short-lived series, Mama’s Family, before taking on her most memorable role two years later, on the popular sitcom, The Golden Girls. Portraying the seductive southern belle, Blanche Devereaux, the actress received an Emmy Award in 1987 for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series (a nomination she received four times).
Let’s take a look back -first, from an amusing clip of Rue, showing off her comedic timing in a memorable episode of Maude:
And now, a wonderful compilation of “Blanche” clips from The Golden Girls:
As we celebrate the life and career of Ruth McClanahan at Retroland, we welcome your comments and memories of this beloved actress who brought smiles to millions.