Golden Globe-winning actress Katherine Helmond dies at the age of 89

Known best for playing Mona Robinson, Judith Light's mother on 'Who's the Boss?' which also starred Tony Danza, the actress won a best supporting Golden Globe for her work in 1989


                            Golden Globe-winning actress Katherine Helmond dies at the age of 89

Seven-time Emmy-nominated and two-time Golden Globe-winning actress Katherine Helmond, who played two very different matriarchs on the ABC sitcoms 'Who's the Boss?' and 'Soap,' died at the age of 89, her talent agency announced Friday.

Helmond died of complications from Alzheimer's disease last Saturday at her home in Los Angeles, talent agency APA said in a statement. "She was the love of my life. We spent 57 beautiful, wonderful, loving years together, which I will treasure forever," her husband, David Christian, said in a statement. "I've been with Katherine since I was 19 years old. The night she died, I saw that the moon was exactly half-full, just as I am now... half of what I've been my entire adult life."

Known best for playing Mona Robinson, Judith Light's mother on 'Who's the Boss?' which also starred Tony Danza and a young Alyssa Milano, the actress won best supporting Golden Globe for her work in 1989. Prior to that, she played the role of a naive Jessica Tate on 'Soap,' which ran for four seasons from 1977-1981, and that too earned her a Globe in 1981.

American actress Katherine Helmond during a visit to London, 23rd November 1979. She stars as Jessica Tate on the ABC soap opera/sitcom 'Soap'. (Photo by Steve Burton/Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
American actress Katherine Helmond during a visit to London, 23rd November 1979. She stars as Jessica Tate on the ABC soap opera/sitcom 'Soap'. (Photo by Steve Burton/Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

A native of Galveston, Texas, Helmond's credits date back to the 1950s as she a landed a slew of steady small roles through the decades. All seven of her Emmy nominations came when she was nearly 50. Helmond was also known for her recurring roles on shows such as 'Coach' and 'Everybody Loves Raymond.'

Her work in film included a voice role in the 'Cars' movies and credits in three Terry Gilliam films, 'Time Bandits,' 'Brazil,' and 'Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.' Helmond's friends and co-stars took to Twitter to pay their tributes and 'Who's the Boss?' co-star Tony Danza called her "a national treasure." Alyssa Milano called the actress an "instrumental part" of her life.