Beatrice Arthur (born Bernice Frankel), Actress. Born 13 May 1922; Died 25 April 2009
Four days ago, veteran actress and entertainer Bea Arthur lost her battle with cancer. Over four decades, she delighted people of all ages, best known as Dorothy Zbornak, leader of the gang of The Golden Girls, which aired between 1985 and 1992.
I was brought up partly by my grandmother. I remember her enjoying the fun yet inoffensive antics of the Florida retirees who aired primetime on Channel 4. The laughter proved infectious, and though I would hardly list it as a great favourite of mine, I certainly remember the programme, its characters and the wonderful actresses who played them with great affection.
Due to her success, she took a back seat and performed roles in programmes she was offered and considered worth her time, playing crazed Feminist computer the Femputer in Futurama; babysitter to Malcolm in the Middle's youngest delinquent, Dewey; as well as Larry David's mother in Curb Your Enthusiasm.
You can read the BBC News report of her death here, and her obituary in The Guardianhere.