John Travolta and Jamie Lee Curtis lead tributes to actress Kirstie Alley, dead at 71

John Travolta and Jamie Lee Cutis are among those who have paid tribute to Kristie Alley, following news of the actress’ death earlier today (December 6).

Alley’s death was confirmed by her two children, William Stevenson and Lillie Parker Stevenson, who shared a statement on the actress’ Twitter. The children revealed that Alley had been battling a recent cancer diagnosis, which was “only recently discovered”, before remembering their mother for her “never-ending joy” and “zest for life”.

The actress was known for her roles on sitcoms like Cheers, Look Who’s Talking and Veronica’s Closet, the last of which earned her both a Golden Globe and Emmy Award nomination in 1998. She was 71 years old at the time of her death, and, as noted in the statement, was surrounded by close family.

“We are sad to inform you that our incredible, fierce and loving mother has passed away after a battle with cancer, only recently discovered,” the statement read. Alley’s children went on to thank the doctors who treated her at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Florida, before continuing their tribute.

“As iconic as she was on screen, she was an even more amazing mother and grandmother… [she left] us inspired to live life to the fullest just as she did”, they wrote. “We thank you for your love and prayers and ask that you respect our privacy at this difficult time.”   

An outpouring of tributes have been paid to the late actress in the wake of her passing. John Travolta, who co-starred alongside Alley in Look Who’s Talking, shared an image of the pair on Instagram, remembering the actress as “one of the most special relationships I’ve ever had.” The actor concluded his tribute by writing: “I know we will see each other again.”

Jamie Lee Curtis, who worked with Alley on the second season of television series Scream Queens, said Alley “was a great comic foil in [the show] and a beautiful mama bear in her very real life.” Curtis recalled buying “onesies” with the actress for her family, and reflected on the “mutual respect and connection” they shared.

Alley’s For Richer Or Poorer co-star Tim Allen deemed her death “sad, sad news” and offered “prayers for all her family”, while actress and singer Kristen Chenoworth shared images of Alley with the caption: “I love you, Kirstie. I will see you again someday. I can’t believe you’re gone.”

The Shawshank Redemption actor Clancy Brown, who appeared with Alley in the 1988 film Shoot To Kill, wrote that he “loved working with her” and that “there was no one like her on earth.” Touched By An Angel actress Valerie Bertinelli, Frasier star Kelsey Williams, and Frozen voice actor Josh Gad were among the other figures to pay tribute to the late actress.

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