Former Golden Girl Rue McClanahan has passed away at age 76. She died of a stroke at 1 AM today, according to her manager. McClanahan, a seasoned stage actress, is best known for her role as sexually liberated Southern belle Blanche Devereaux on the NBC comedy series The Golden Girls, which earned her four Emmy nominations and a win in 1987. Also among her memorable TV roles were her stints on Maude and Mama’s Family. With McClanahan’s passing, which follows the deaths of Estelle Getty and Bea Arthur in the past two years, Betty White is now the the only surviving member of the Golden Girls cast. UPDATE: White just issued the following statement. “Rue was a close and dear friend. I treasured our relationship. It hurts more than I even thought it would, if that’s even possible.”
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