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Hollywood Remembers Valerie Harper, ‘A True Comedic Genius’

Hollywood Remembers Valerie Harper, ‘A True Comedic Genius’

Celebrities took to social media on Friday to mourn the death of Valerie Harper, who played the Bronx-accented Rhoda Morgenstern on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and its topline spinoff “Rhoda.” The Emmy-winning actress died Friday at 80 years old after being diagnosed with lung and brain cancer in 2009.

Ed Asner, who played Lou Grant opposite Harper in the famous ’70s show and his own eponymous spinoff series, was one of the first to respond to her death. “A beautiful woman, a wonderful actress, a great friend and with balls bigger than mine,” Asner wrote on Twitter. “Her brilliance burst through and shined its light upon all of us. Goodnight beautiful. I’ll see you soon.”

Oscar-winning actress Marlee Matlin also shared her condolences on Twitter, saying Harper would join Mary Tyler Moore, who died at the age of 80 in 2017. “Even when she was down she danced and showed the world that she refused to let cancer beat her,” Matlin wrote. “Now Rhoda is with Mary in heaven. RIP Valerie Harper. You were the epitome of strength and humor.”

SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris said in a statement, “Valerie Harper was a wonderful actor who made us laugh and cry and laugh again. She cared very much about the membership and we appreciate her service to the union. Our deepest sympathies go out to her family and friends. May she rest in peace.”

Other celebrities such as Cyndi Lauper, Robin Roberts, Topher Grace, Alyssa Milano and Michael Schur also spoke out about the star’s death.

“Sad to hear about the passing of #ValerieHarper,” Roberts tweeted. “She was incredibly courageous facing cancer with her humor and grace. Thinking of her devoted family, friends, and many fans. Like Mary Tyler Moore she could turn the world on with her smile.”

A beautiful woman, a wonderful actress, a great friend and with balls bigger than mine. Her brilliance burst through and shined its light upon all of us. Goodnight beautiful. I’ll see you soon. pic.twitter.com/FicADkSAzS

— Ed Asner (@TheOnlyEdAsner) August 30, 2019

Sad to hear about the passing of #ValerieHarper. She was incredibly courageous facing cancer with her humor and grace. Thinking of her devoted family, friends, and many fans. Like Mary Tyler Moore she could turn the world on with her smile. 🙏🏾❤️ pic.twitter.com/iEHnWl2BTO

— Robin Roberts (@RobinRoberts) August 30, 2019

Valerie Harper was always the most gracious and the kindest actor on set.

She will be missed. Rest In Peace.

💔 pic.twitter.com/kJdXYrmzmq

— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) August 30, 2019

Valerie Harper passed away. She was a wonderful actress and brought me so much joy. She will be missed rip❤️

— Cyndi Lauper (@cyndilauper) August 30, 2019

One of our all-time favorites has passed. Wonderful, funny, lovely, supportive and a huge influence on and off stage, we love you, Valerie. https://t.co/SKrX7n4WYH

— Phil Rosenthal (@PhilRosenthal) August 30, 2019

Valerie Harper was one of the greatest TV actors of all time. A true comedic genius. She inspired me, and I loved her very much.

— Ken Tremendous (@KenTremendous) August 30, 2019

I was so sad to hear that the amazing Valerie Harper passed away. “Aunt Paula” was as wonderful to work with as she was funny. My best to her family. pic.twitter.com/DuOom2478j

— Topher Grace (@TopherGrace) August 30, 2019

Rhoda Morgenstern — ambitious career woman, funny artsy Jewish New Yorker, Mary’s BFF — was so relatable to me that I wore a scarf like hers all thru 7th grade.
RIP Valerie Harper. pic.twitter.com/D01PD9mpxI

— Julie Cohen (@FilmmakerJulie) August 30, 2019

Valerie Harper was one of the greatest TV actors of all time. A true comedic genius. She inspired me, and I loved her very much.

— Ken Tremendous (@KenTremendous) August 30, 2019

Another wonderful actor passes away. Loved this show growing up.

Valerie Harper, TV’s Rhoda, has died at 80 https://t.co/0SB1HMkrst

— Kevin Sorbo (@ksorbs) August 30, 2019

Even when she was down she danced and showed the world that she refused to let cancer beat her. Now Rhoda is with Mary in heaven. RIP Valerie Harper. You were the epitome of strength and humor. 😢🤟🏻 pic.twitter.com/CEGWl4hfhA

— Marlee Matlin (@MarleeMatlin) August 30, 2019

Icon 💔 and lovely human being. She elevated everything she was in. A master. https://t.co/e5bgkqmBSk

— kristen johnston (@thekjohnston) August 30, 2019

Thank you brilliant Valerie– you gave us so much!!💔 RIP Valerie Harper pic.twitter.com/URF0SuzCux

— Mia Farrow (@MiaFarrow) August 30, 2019

Rhoda was a terrific show and Valerie Harper such a superb lead – real, honest and hugely funny. https://t.co/9X22heZysP

— Simon Blackwell (@simonblackwell) August 30, 2019

The Mary Tyler Moore Show is interesting because it’s ultimately a wholesome show, but every character had a sarcastic streak that was invigorating. Valerie Harper could be withering and loving in the same breath. Love her forever.

— Louis Virtel (@louisvirtel) August 30, 2019