Shelley Morrison Dies: ‘Will & Grace’ Actress And Fan Favorite Was 83


Veteran actress and Will & Grace breakout star and fan-favorite Shelley Morrison died Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. She was 83.

Morrison with the cast of ‘Will & Grace’ Kevork Djansezian/Shutterstock

Morrison’s publicist Lori DeWaal told the Associated Press that Morrison died from heart failure after a brief illness.

The actress’s career spans 50 years but is best known as the sharp-tongued maid Rosario Salazar from NBC’s Will & Grace who would go head to head with Megan Mullally’s Karen Walker, trading verbal jabs and insults. She played the character for eight seasons from 1999 to 2006 and won a Screen Actors Guild award for best ensemble in a comedy series.

Morrison was born in the Bronx, New York as Rachel Mitrani in 1936. She primarily spoke Spanish and was cast in many Latinx roles. In addition to Will & Grace, Morrison’s resume includes a lengthy list of TV series and films. From 1967 to 1970 She played Sister Sixto alongside Sally Field in the iconic series The Flying Nun. She also had guest-starring roles in other TV staples from the ’60s on, including The Fugitive, L.A. Law and Murder, She Wrote. She also provided the voice of Mrs. Portillo in Handy Manny, an animated series from Disney.

On the film side, she may be remembered by many as Rosa from the Girl Scout-esque comedy Troop Beverly Hills (1989) starring Shelley Long. The character was very similar to Will & Grace‘s Rosario. She also appeared alongside many legendary actors in many films including How to Save a Marriage and Ruin Your Life (1968) alongside Dean Martin, Funny Girl (1968) with Barbra Streisand, Mackenna’s Gold (1969) with Gregory Peck as well as Fools Rush In (1997) with Salma Hayek.

Morrison is survived by her husband Walter Dominguez.

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