Hollywood paid tribute on Friday to former “Soap” and “Who’s the Boss?” star Katherine Helmond, who passed away at 89 on Feb. 23.
“Katherine Helmond was a remarkable human being and an extraordinary artist; generous, gracious, charming and profoundly funny,” “Who’s the Boss?” co-star Judith Light said in a statement. “She taught me so much about life and inspired me indelibly by watching her work. Katherine was a gift to our business and to the world, and will be deeply missed.”
“She was such an influence on me,” Tony Danza said in a statement. “No matter what problem I had, I could go to her. Very few people could match her. She was a consummate professional. She never made a mistake and she always got the laugh. She was the sexy older lady who could keep up with the young people. She just had a way about her.”
Helmond passed away due to complications from Alzheimer’s in her home in Los Angeles on Feb. 23. She won two Golden Globes, was nominated for seven Emmys and was also nominated for a Tony, all part of a five-decade career on film, television and stage.
Alyssa Milano, who starred with Helmond on “Who’s the Boss?” offered her own tribute to her onscreen grandmother:
“My beautiful, kind, funny, gracious, compassionate, rock,” Milano wrote. “You were an instrumental part of my life. You taught me to hold my head above the marsh! You taught me to do anything for a laugh! What an example you were!”
Danny Pintauro, who played Milano’s brother on the show, also spoke with TheWrap about Helmond.
“The best TV grandmother a boy could ask for,” Pintauro said. “Even still, Im just as devastated as I was when I lost my real grandma. A beautiful soul has left us for the next chapter, may you make them laugh Katherine!”
Helmond also appeared in many films, including several from director Terry Gilliam such as his “Time Bandits,” “Brazil” and “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.” On Saturday, Gilliam posted his own tribute to Helmond on his Facebook page.
“Katherine always lit up the room and the screen whenever she appeared. She glowed. Her smile and laughter made every moment with her a joy,” Gilliam said. “She made our lives richer, warmer, and infinitely jollier.”
Below, see some other online reactions to Helmond’s passing:
Katherine Helmond has passed away.
My beautiful, kind, funny, gracious, compassionate, rock. You were an instrumental part of my life. You taught me to hold my head above the marsh! You taught me to do anything for a laugh! What an example you were!
Rest In Peace, Katherine. pic.twitter.com/HNIH0Ty6MN
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) March 1, 2019
Katherine Helmond was such a class act and incredibly down to earth. She was terrific as my mother on #EveryboyLovesRaymond and I looked up to her as a role model. #RIPKatherineHelmond https://t.co/Yiku05soq4
— Patricia Heaton (@PatriciaHeaton) March 1, 2019
Our deepest sympathies go out to the loved ones of Overboard star Katherine Helmond, who has passed away at age 89. pic.twitter.com/0pZRpr5iBM
— MGM Studios (@MGM_Studios) March 1, 2019
RIP Katherine Helmond, blithe spirit of Soap. She beautifully embodied an airy, throwaway style of sitcom acting that doesn't really exist anymore and that I suspect was much harder than it appeared to be.
— Mark Harris (@MarkHarrisNYC) March 1, 2019
R.I.P. dear Katherine Helmond. You were a joy and an inspiration in my career and my life.
— Joe Mantegna (@JoeMantegna) March 1, 2019