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Mary Tyler Moore’s Most Unforgettable Roles: Michelle Obama On How The Actress Shaped Her Life Perspective


Mary Tyler Moore passed away at the age of 80 on Wednesday. The actress, best known for her roles in television sitcoms, died at Greenwich Hospital in Connecticut due to cardiopulmonary arrest brought upon by pneumonia.

Moore was survived by her husband, Dr. Robert Levine, whom she married in 1983, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The actress was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when she was 33 and in recent years, nearly got blind due to the disease. The illness inspired Moore to advocate for the research of diabetes cures and even became the international chairman of the charitable organization Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, the Huffington Post noted.

Moore's roles in television turned heads but the one that started it all was the 1960s CBS sitcom, "The Dick Van Dyke Show," where she portrayed Laurie Petrie for five seasons, TVLine reported. She then went on to headline "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" in the '70s (also in CBS) and played Mary Richards, an employee at a TV station in Minneapolis. Her self-titled sitcom aired for seven years and won 29 Emmy Awards.

What came next for Moore was the 1978 TV movie "First You Cry." Starring alongside Anthony Perkins, Moore portrayed a TV correspondent with breast cancer. She got nominated for an Emmy Award for the role.

Moore's other memorable projects include the 1985 rom-com TV movie "Finnegan Begin Again" (which also starred Robert Preston as a newsman in his 60s), 1990's "The Last Best Year" alongside Bernadette Peters, 1993's "Stolen Babies," 1996's "Ellen" top-billed by Ellen DeGeneres, 2003's "Blessings" with co-star Liam Waite, 2006's "That '70s Show" that starred Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis and "Hot in Cleveland," where she reunited with her "Mary Tyler Moore Show" co-stars Betty White, Valerie Harper, Cloris Leachman and Georgia Engel.

"Hot in Cleveland" was Moore's last TV appearance. At the time, the actress described the reunion as "wonderful," though it also made her "sad," Entertainment Tonight reported.

Hollywood stars shared their condolences and honored Moore after news of her death became public. Former First Lady Michelle Obama also praised the actress' work on her self-titled sitcom.

Moore's character taught the then 10-year-old Obama that marriage, motherhood, education and career-building were all options. All of these are all viable choices that "can lead to happiness and fulfillment," Obama told Variety.

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