Florence Henderson, TV’s iconic ‘Carol Brady,’ passes away at 82

Florence Henderson, TV’s iconic ‘Carol Brady,’ passes away at 82
(Image: Screen grab of YouTube video)

Florence Henderson, who went from Broadway star to become one of America’s most beloved television moms in “The Brady Bunch,” has died. She was 82.

Henderson died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles on Thursday night, a day after she was hospitalized, said her publicist, David Brokaw. Henderson had suffered heart failure, her manager Kayla Pressman said in a statement. …

Henderson was a 19-year-old drama student in New York when she landed a one-line role in the play “Wish You Were Here.”

Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II were so impressed they made her the female lead in a 1952 road tour of “Oklahoma!” When the show returned to Broadway for a revival in 1954, she continued in the role and won rave reviews. …

She made her movie debut in 1970 in “Song of Norway,” based on the 1944 operetta with music by Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg.

Her career nearly came to an end in 1965 when she suddenly lost her hearing while appearing in “The King and I” in Los Angeles. She was diagnosed with a condition linked to heredity.

“Corrective surgery in both ears restored my hearing,” she said in 2007. …

Florence Agnes Henderson was born Feb. 14, 1934, in the small town of Dale in southern Indiana. She was the 10th child of a tobacco sharecropper of Irish descent. …

Henderson married theater executive Ira Bernstein and the couple had four children before the union ended in divorce after 29 years.

Her second husband, John Kappas, died in 2002.

Pressman said she is survived by her children, Barbara, Joseph, Robert and Lizzie, their spouses and five grandchildren.

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