So sad. Actress Patty Duke, best known for her Oscar-winning role as Helen Keller in ‘The Miracle Worker,’ has passed away at the age of 69 on March 29. Get the heartbreaking details here.
Hollywood lost a legend on the early morning of March 29. Patty Duke, an Oscar-winning actress and former child star, died from a ruptured intestine at 69 years old. Her manager, Michael Stubbs, confirmed the sad news just hours after her passing.
“Anna ‘Patty Duke’ Pearce passed away this morning March 29, 2016 at 1:20 am,” his statement read. “Her cause of death was sepsis from a ruptured intestine. She was a wife, a mother, a grandmother, a friend, a mental health advocate and a cultural icon. She will be missed.”
Patty started out her career on Broadway, starring as Helen Keller in the stage version of The Miracle Worker before reprising the role on the big screen. She took home the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the part, winning the award at just 16 years old — the youngest person to win an Oscar at the time.
Just one year after her big-screen success, Patty was given her own TV series, The Patty Duke Show, in 1963. In the show, Patty portrayed “identical cousins,” two women with extremely different personalities. Ironically, it was determined that she suffered from bipolar disorder in real life, which led her to drug abuse. Patty later used her struggle to become a mental health advocate.
Along with her acting achievements and her contributions to the mental health community, Patty served as president of the Screen Actors Guild from 1985 to 1988. Although she may not be a familiar face to younger generations, she continued her acting career with guest-starring roles in an episode of Glee in 2013 and Disney Channel’s Liv And Maddie in 2015.
— Sean Astin (@SeanAstin) March 29, 2016
Leaving behind a family and a legacy, Patty will certainly be missed by many. Our hearts go out to her loved ones as they mourn her loss.
HollywoodLifers, send your thoughts to Patty’s loved ones during this difficult time.