News that TV legend Valerie Harper was suffering from terminal brain cancer quickly caused an outpouring of emotion from her longtime celebrity friends and co-stars.
The “Rhoda” star has been told that she has as less than three months to live, and now the outpouring of sympathy and support from the Hollywood community continues to grow.
Harper’s co-stars of “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” were quick to share their grief and shock over the sad news.
Longtime friend Ed Asner said he refuses to accept that she has only months left to live, according to The New York Daily News, stating, “I have come to know her much better in my later years and have every confidence in the world that she will shock the hell out of us and survive to keep functioning as the great talent and human that she is.”
Of course, on-air BFF Mary Tyler Moore agreed that Harper had been instrumental in shaping her own life.
“I’m absolutely devastated by this news,” Mary Tyler Moore said in a statement Wednesday. “Valerie has given so much joy, laughter and love to the world. I join her fans and send much love and positive thoughts to her and her family during this difficult time.”
Cloris Leachman shared her grief on Facebook, writing “I love and adore Valerie Harper and have every confidence that she is dealing with this very difficult information in the best way possible. She’s one smart lady and I know she will handle her illness as she has handled everything else in her life…with intelligence, optimism and grace .”
She went on to tell her Twitter followers that “My longtime friendship w/ @ValerieHarper has been 1 of the gr8est gifts of my life. I’m here 4 any/everything she may need one day at a time”
Jason Bateman, who starred with Harper early in his career on “Valerie,” noted that she played a key role in the evolution of his career.
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“Valerie is someone that I’ve learned a great deal from. Not just comedically but also in her ability to put whomever approached her, or worked with her, completely at ease with a laugh and an energy that’s intoxicating,” he told Entertainment Tonight.
Other friends and celebrities continued to share their thoughts and feelings about Harper and her impact on their lives. Here are a few Tweets that came out today…
Larry King: I’ve known Valerie Harper for years- enjoyed intv’ing her & being in her company-wishing her strength & good thoughts
Lou Diamond Phillips: My thoughts and prayers are with my friend Valerie Harper. I pray she wins this fight. Truly one of the most wonderful people I’ve ever met.
Marlee Matlin: An example of grace, humor and strength, @valerieharper is a hero to me. Sending love, light and prayers.
Melissa Gilbert: May the angels watch over Valerie Harper. She is an amazing woman with great heart and courage. My prayers go to her and her family.
Marie Osmond: It’s just like @valerieharper to go forward with grace and appreciation. My prayers are with you, Valerie
Debra Messing: @Cloris_Leachman @valerieharper my love and prayers with you both… My heros
Andy Cohen: Praying for Valerie Harper. Puts everything in perspective quickly.
Nia Varalos: Valerie Harper, please know you will always be every awkward girl’s mentor. Love, Toula