Having lived to 99 years of age, it is safe to say that Betty White devoted a lot of her time to the whole acting thing. At the time of her death, she was older than Kyrgyzstan (1991), the Slinky (1943), and even sliced bread (1928).
After her birth in Illinois in 1922, White’s career started in the 1940s and continued well into the 2010s, with her final film role before her death being in 2019’s Trouble. Not unlike her Golden Girls character, she liked to be in on the action. “Retirement is not in my vocabulary,” White said after receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2015 Emmys. In 2013, the Guinness Book of World Records recognized Betty White for having the longest TV career of any woman entertainer.
Since she was on our screens longer than most of us have lived, we’ll give you a little refresher on the amazing things she contributed to the world:
1) The Golden Girls
Who knew that a group of four retirement-aged women could steal our hearts as much as they did? White played the part of Rose—the spacey friend with a trove of funny stories.
The show tackled some serious issues of the time like AIDS, gay marriage, and teen pregnancy, but never lost its lighthearted atmosphere. You see, Rose had a knack for finding sticky situations to get herself into. These strange circumstances gave inspiration for many of the TV tropes still seen in shows today.
The Golden Girls captured the idea of women living it up regardless of their age, which couldn’t have been more refreshing.
2) Later Roles
Between her roles in The Proposal, Lake Placid, and Hot in Cleveland (along with a GREAT many cameos), Betty White established her personal character—an old woman so incredibly witty and fun you’d wonder if she was actually senile.
3) Everything Else
She crushed her appearances on late-night talk shows:
And cracked us up on her own Betty White’s Off Their Rockers.
She helped us always look on the bright side of life:
And helped us understand that, even at our worst times, we’re not alone.
And always remember…