Published: Tue, August 07, 2018
Life&Culture | By Peggy Hughes

'Facts of Life' Star Charlotte Rae Dies at 92

'Facts of Life' Star Charlotte Rae Dies at 92

Charlotte Rae, who starred as Edna Garret on the classic '70s and '80s sitcoms "Diff'rent Stroke" and "The Facts of Life", has died at age 92.

Advised to drop her Jewish-sounding last name early in her career, Rae found a foothold in show-business, ironically, playing Sylvia Schnauser on the TV comedy "Car 54, Where Are You?". 7 years earlier, she had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

After Charlotte Rae's death was announced, many of her TV co-stars, including Facts Of Life stars Kim Fields and Mindy Cohn and Diff'rent Strokes' Todd Bridges, took to social media to pay tribute to their beloved Mrs. Garrett.

While Rae was best known for her work on the small screen, she also managed to score two Tony noms for parts she played on Broadway.

Rae gave her final TV performance on "Girl Meets World" in 2015 and appeared in her final movie, the Meryl Streep vehicle "Ricki and the Flash", a year later.

"So now, at the age of 91, I have to make up my mind".

In addition to her son, Rae is survived by her sister and three grandchildren.

"I love life. I've had a wonderful one already ..." So, I love it all.

Edna Garrett provided kind if sometimes wry counsel to her Facts of Life charges on a series that was praised for dealing with sensitive teenage issues such as sex, drug use, eating disorders and peer pressure.

"The Facts of Life" debuted in 1979 and centered around Mrs. Garrett's relationship with a group of girls she met in the season 1 finale of "Diff'rent Strokes". You were loved by everyone on our show and you were loved by everyone on the facts of life will miss you.

Rae wrote a 2015 memoir, "The Facts of My Life", in which she recounted husband John Strauss' disclosure that he was bisexual and described how she dealt with the death of her son Andy, who had autism and epilepsy.

While Rae's earliest TV work included roles on the sitcom vehicle 54, Where Are You?

"I want to bring in as much humanity as possible, as well as the humor", she said.

Donations may be made to the The Actors Fund, Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (Pan-Can) or the Clare Foundation.

"Different Strokes would not have been the same without you #CharlotteRae".

- Lisa Whelchel (@LisaWhelchel)Saddened to hear about Charlotte Rae's passing.

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