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Nov 25 2016
Actress & Singer Florence Henderson, Forever Carol Brady, Dies @ 82 Comments (0)

Florence-henderson-smileFlorence Henderson — February 14, 1934-November 24, 2016 (Image via DearDoctor.com)

Just a stub for now, as AP reports that Florence Henderson has died at 82, according to her manager. Henderson died of heart failure at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in L.A. one day after being hospitalized.

Henderson made her Broadway debut in 1952, and was an accomplished actress and singer on the stage before becoming a TV icon for her pure-as-the-driven snow Carol Brady on The Brady Bunch (1969-1974). Her Carol was easily one of TV's most beloved moms, “a lovely lady who was bringing up three very lovely girls,” yet who did so with no job and a mysteriously absent first hubby.

E89ecc97dacd9651ef2c428e58b4a9e8That hair!!! (Image via ABC)

She also, as Carol, had, for a stretch, one of TV's most memorable haircuts. That Carol Brady mullet was just as memorable as her exasperated, “Miiiike!” I will always adore Carol's nerdiness, such as when she scolded Marcia and Greg for calling Bobby a stinker. “You know I don't like that word!”

She gamely recreated the role and played off of it on a slew of post-cancellation spin-offs, variety series and specials, later making gentle fun of the inescapable image by sending it up with various sexy spoofs. She had an unforgettable cameo in 1995's campy The Brady Bunch Movie, in which she finally got to tell Jan to “cut the crap.” It was one of her few film appearances.

Who could ever forget her appearance in Weird Al Yankovic's “Amish Paradise” music video? (1996)

Henderson's TV debut came in 1954. Along with The Brady Bunch, she made many singing appearances on talk shows and hosted her own shows as well, including hosting Country Kitchen (1985-1993), Our Generation (1995-1996), Short-cut Cooking (1998-2000) and Who's Cooking with Florence Henderson (2013-her death). 

Check out this recent interview with Henderson — from just a year ago — in which she spoke about her gratitude for having a happy, healthy life, and in which she said she was happy to be alive: 

With Henderson's death, all of the adults from The Brady Bunch have passed away: Robert Reed (of AIDS, in 1992), Sam the Butcher aka Allan Melvin (2008), Ann B. Davis (in a fall, 2014).

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