Emmy-winning “Cheers” actress Kirstie Alley died unexpectedly after a brief battle with cancer at the age of 71.
Alley’s two children announced her passing in a statement on Twitter Monday evening.
“We are sad to inform you that our incredible, fierce and loving mother has passed away after a battle with cancer, only recently discovered,” the tweeted from her account.
“She was surrounded by her closest family and fought with great strength, leaving us with a certainty of her never-ending joy of living and whatever adventures lie ahead. As iconic as she was on screen, she was an even more amazing mother and grandmother.”
Actor Ted Danson, who costarred with Alley on “Cheers,” for six seasons, after she joined the comedy in 1987, said that he watched an old episode of the show on Monday, prior to learning about her death.
“It was the episode where Tom Berenger proposes to Kirstie, who keeps saying no, even though she desperately wants to say yes. Kirstie was truly brilliant in it. Her ability to play a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown was both moving and hysterically funny,” he told Deadline.
“She made me laugh 30 years ago when she shot that scene, and she made me laugh today just as hard. As I got off the plane, I heard that Kirstie had died. I am so sad and so grateful for all the times she made me laugh.”
Fellow costar Kelsey Grammer simply said that he “loved her.” While Rhea Perlman added that they “became friends almost instantly” when Alley joined the cast.
“I’ve never met anyone remotely like her. I feel so thankful to have known her. I’m going to miss her very, very much,” Perlman remarked.
“Look Who’s Talking” costar John Travolta shared a photo tribute on Instagram, which he captioned: “Kirstie was one of the most special relationships I’ve ever had. I love you Kirstie. I know we will see each other again.”
Alley had an expansive acting career dating back to the early eighties when she appeared in “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.” She became a household name during her 148 episodes of “Cheers,” starred in “The Godfather” spinoff “The Last Don,” and helmed “Veronica’s Closet in the late 1990’s.
She had huge success in the box office with the “Look Who’s Talking” franchise beside Travolta, and “For Richer or Poorer” with Tim Allen.
Alley’s career tapered off in her later years, after publicly supported President Donald Trump’s candidacy in 2016, and began sharing her conservative views on Twitter.
The right-wing star enraged liberals for her scathing takes on the state of the nation, which escalated in 2020.
In October of that year she endorsed Trump on Twitter. “I’m voting for [Donald Trump] because he’s NOT a politician,” she posted.
“I voted for him 4 years ago for this reason and shall vote for him again for this reason. He gets things done quickly and he will turn the economy around quickly.”
Alley took a shot at then Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey on January 8, 2021, after he permanently banned Trump from the platform in the wake of the Capitol riot.
“Hey @jack Why didn’t you suspend these four people’s accounts for inciting riots for months? 30 people died..billions of property destroyed .. millions terrorized ? Bueller Bueller?” She wrote.
She asked President Joe Biden what he thought about censoring conservatives in a follow-up post.
“What’s your take Mr. Biden on TOTAL censorship of conservatives?” She tweeted.
“I know that many times you have said you’re going to be the president of both parties. I really wish you would speak out and object to censorship on behalf of all people.”
Alley charged after then New York Governor Andrew Cuomo in January of 2021, when he began walking back the state’s strict COVID lockdown policies.
“Thank God Cuomo is opening up New York!!!…..and JUST IN TIME for Biden’s inauguration …..it’s like a Covid miracle …ish,” she posted.
In May of the same year, she criticized the State Department, after reports surfaced that Wuhan lab researchers were displaying COVID symptoms as early as November 2019.
“Seriously??? “It might be possible that COVID began in the Wuhan lab?”….. all over the news NOW????!!!! What a clever government we have,” Alley blasted.
That August, she spoke out against the “nullifying of women,” when medical organization encouraged the gender neutral term “chestfeeding” over “breastfeeding.”
“I’m a little tired of the degrading and nullifying of women and their abilities,” Alley seethed.
“Breastfeeding is one of our abilities. It’s a beautiful and important ability. Knock off the nullifying of women fir the sake of lunatics. Equal rights does not equal insanity.”