“Golden Girls” star Betty White, one of the most beloved actors of all time, died Friday just a few weeks short of her 100th birthday. Upon the news of her passing, her admirers reflected on everything that made her such a cherished icon.
“Who didn’t love Betty White? We’re so sad,” first lady Jill Biden told reporters. President Joe Biden added: “We just love Betty White.”
Wendie Malick, who co-starred with White in the TV Land sitcom “Hot in Cleveland,” told Rolling Stone Friday that “every person who ever met Betty will be forever touched and inspired by her. I cannot credit anyone more than Betty for giving me a sense of purpose and joy about my third act.”
Ryan Reynolds, who starred alongside White in the 2009 film “The Proposal,” summarized how many felt about the acting legend, tweeting: “She managed to grow very old and somehow, not old enough.”
Comedian Kathy Griffin shared a series of tweets remembering the friendship they struck up after meeting on the set of the NBC sitcom “Suddenly Susan” in the late 1990s. Once, Griffin recounted, White agreed to appear on her show “Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List” and spend the day with Griffin’s mother.
“She was as sharp and funny as she was soft and wise, and no matter how long this world continues to spin, there will be only one Betty White,” Griffin said in her tribute.
“Late Night” host and “Saturday Night Live” alum Seth Meyers said White was the only SNL host he ever saw receive a standing ovation at the after-party, “at which she ordered a vodka and a hotdog and stayed til the bitter end.”
Sandra Bullock, another one of her co-stars from “The Proposal,” told People she’d commemorate White tonight in a similar style.
“I don’t drink vodka … but I will tonight, on ice, with a slice of lemon with a hot dog on the other side and just be OK being sad,” the actor told People. “I’ll have to buy some rose-colored glasses because Betty was that for all of us.”
Robert Redford, whom White had said over the years she had a crush on, told Entertainment Tonight that her feelings were reciprocated.
“Betty lived life devoted to her craft and her love of animals. She made us all laugh, including me,” Redford said. “I had a crush on her too!”
Steve Martin recounted a time earlier in his career when he was an “obscure opening act for Linda Ronstadt” and saw White and her husband waiting in line.
“I loved Betty White, so I went up to them: ‘I’m so honored to meet you both.’ And then I said, ‘Isn’t Linda great?’ She said, ‘We came to see you.’ I said, ‘Why?’ ‘Because we heard you were funny.’ I was elated,” Martin tweeted.
Here’s what else celebrities had to say about White and her legacy.