Last year ended on a down note: Betty White, the last surviving star of The Golden Girls and a staple of TV and film since the 1940s, passed away on New Year’s Eve, mere weeks shy of what would have been her 100th birthday. The cause of death wasn’t immediately revealed, and it was only made public after her death certificate was obtained by People. And it appears the cause was a cerebrovascular accident, commonly known as a stroke.
The incident didn’t happen the day of her death. Indeed, it appears the stroke make six days prior. The condition occurs due to a loss of blood to the brain, typically caused by clots and broken blood vessels, which then damages brain tissue.
The good news is that it likely didn’t hurt her. “It was a mild stroke,” a source told People. “She died peacefully in her sleep.”
After White’s death, tributes came pouring in. Though a staple of the entertainment world for decades, who had her own show in the early ‘50s, who stole several seasons of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, who earned newfound fame in her 60s as one-fourth of The Golden Girls, she became arguably more popular than ever in her final two decades. But she didn’t leave us without sharing tips on how to endure as long as she did.