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Actress Who Played One Role on TV for Almost Four Decades Dead at 84 EW

A veteran television actress who played one role for nearly 40 years on a long-running series has died. EW.com’s Inside TV reports that Jeanne Cooper, who played matriarch Katherine Chancellor on CBS’s “The Young and the Restless,” died today at 84.

“Cooper, who has starred in the daytime series since its first year in 1973, had been in and out of a Los Angeles hospital recently due to an undisclosed illness,” the story reports. “Her actor/son Corbin Bernsen had been informing fans of her condition via Facebook, where he confirmed her death today.

Bernsen wrote on the website: “My mother passed away this morning just a short time ago, peaceful with my sister by her side, in her sleep. I was going to visit this afternoon, thought I had time. Reminder to self -- time is a precious thing. I too am at peace however. I said my goodbyes several times over during the last few weeks.”

Bernsen also wrote of his mother: “She has been a blaze her entire life, that beacon, that boxer I spoke of earlier. She went the full twelve rounds and by unanimous decision… won! And while her light finally gave into the wind that gives flight to all our journeys, there will always be a glimmer left behind by what she stood for. I will speak about that more in coming days, months I suppose. I will certainly dedicate what remains of my life to continue her purpose of honesty, equality, humility, empathy and love.”

The report notes that it remains unclear how “Y&R” will handle Cooper’s death. “The series is currently six weeks ahead of schedule and her storyline recently involved her character successfully undergoing surgery for a brain tumor,” the piece notes.

In a statement, CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler said: “Jeanne Cooper will be remembered as a daytime television legend and as a friend who will truly be missed by all of us here at the Network. She was the longest-running cast member on daytime’s No. 1 show, bringing indelible charm, class and talent to every episode. On behalf of everyone at CBS, we send our condolences to Jeanne’s family, as well as the legions of fans she has amassed during her record 39 years on ‘The Young and The Restless,’ and throughout her career.”

Cooper received 10 Daytime Emmy nominations during her career, winning the Daytime Emmy in 2008. She also received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Daytime Emmys in 2004, and had two Primetime Emmy nominations.

jeanne-cooper.jpgJeanne Cooper