Patty Duke passed away due to an intestinal sepsis at the age of 69 leaving away a legacy of talent and welfare.
There are rarely stars that reach the height of excellence from a young age and Patty Duke was one of those stars that dazzled on all platforms of talent that there were. Winning the Oscar at the tender age of 16 in 1962 for her role as Hellen Keller in the movie The Miracle Worker.
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The movie was based on the chronicles of American icon Hellen Keller from 1903. Keller was a deaf, blind and mute girl who learns to communicate through her tutor played by Anne Bancroft who also won an Oscar for the same movie. She is also known as the first teenager who had a show with her own name, “The Patty Duke Show” which ran from 1963-1966.
Patty played the two identical twins which included characters, Patricia "Patty" Lane, a "typical" rock 'n roll American teenager who occasionally got into minor trouble at school and home, and Catherine "Cathy" Lane, her more well-behaved cousin from Scotland. The roles were very different and showed a variety of acting with different accents and character.
The show concept was given by Sidney Sheldon who saw her dual personality way before she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. She also won Emmys for her various performances.
We are sad to say that Patty is no longer among us. Although she had been diagnosed earlier in her life with bipolar disorder and struggled with drinking and smoking for which she even wrote, two books including an autobiography, Patty died of intestinal sepsis and not psychological symptoms.
She passed away early at about 1.20 a.m. on 29th March at a hospital in Coeur D'Alene, Idaho where she had settled with her fourth husband Michael Pearce with whom she was married for 25 years.
"This morning, our beloved wife, mother, matriarch and the exquisite artist, humanitarian and champion of mental health, Anna Patty Duke, closed her eyes, quieted her pain and ascended to a beautiful place," said her family in a statement to NYTimes. "We celebrate the infinite love and compassion she shared through her work and throughout her life."
Patty is also known for her welfare work for mental and psychological disorders. Having been suffering from one herself, Patty was empathetic to the cause and did a great deal for research and awareness about the bipolar disorder and other psychological disorders.
She passed away at the age of 69. She is survived by her husband Michael Pearce and her three sons including Sean Astin of the Lord of the Rings.
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Sean thanked everyone who had sent their thoughts and condolences to the family and Patty. He said that it is a great privilege to know that his mother was known and loved by so many for her exquisite talent and welfare work.