Carole Cook, known for her role as Grandma Helen in the 80s classic, “Sixteen Candles” is no more! The legendary broadway star passed away Wednesday (Jan. 11) at the age of 98, just three days before her 99th birthday. The news of her death was confirmed by her husband, actor Tom Troupe (94). Read on to know the cause of death.
Carole Died Of A Heart Failure…
Mildred Frances Cook, famously known as Carole Cook, passed away on Wednesday (Jan. 11) at the age of 98. The American actress, known for appearances on The Lucy Show and Here’s Lucy, died of heart failure in Beverly Hills, California, according to multiple reports. The news of her death was confirmed by her husband, actor Tom Troupe (94).
Cook would have turned 99 on Saturday (Jan. 14). Born on January 14, 1924, the legendary actress and broadway star, was known for her iconic roles and humor. Cook’s manager, Robert Malcom revealed that the broadway star passed away “peacefully” around her husband, Tom Troupe. Cook’s nephew, Mark Cocanougher also took to Facebook to pay tribute to her aunt.
“Carole departed in peace and comfort having lived a long and wonderful life doing the work that she loved,” Cocanougher wrote. “She made many friends, and I know they will all miss her spirit, humor, and talent on the stage, and for life in general. And that’s pretty great.”
Carole Cook: A Star With Decades-Long Career
When you speak of broadway, you cannot miss Carole Cook. She appeared in the original Broadway productions of “42nd Street” and “Romantic Comedy” (Blanche Dailey). She starred as Maggie Jones in the Tony Award-winning musical 42nd Street.
She is also credited for starring as Dolly Levi in “Hello, Dolly!” Apart from this, she is celebrated for playing Mrs Peacham in the 1956 off-Broadway production of The Threepenny Opera, starring Lotte Lenya. From 1963 to 1968, Cook appeared in various roles on “The Lucy Show” opposite Lucille Ball. She is also credited for working on CBS’ “Here’s Lucy.”
Wondering how she became Carole Cook from Mildred Frances Cook? Well, that’s an interesting tale to tell. When Cook began her career in 1959 as a performer in Lucille Ball’s “Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse”, she became extremely close to Ball. Lucille Ball ended up being her mentor, colleague, friend and one-time roommate.
It was Ball who convinced Cook to change her name from Milfred to Carole, as a nod to actor Carole Lombard. With a new role and young talent, she began grabbing big roles in the industry. In the 1970s, she appeared in television projects like “Starsky & Hutch,” “Charlie’s Angels,” “Kojak” and “Maude.”
As for her film career, Carole Cook portrayed the iconic role of the wife of Don Knotts’ character in “The Incredible Mr. Limpet.” Two decades later, she made headlines with her role as Molly Ringwald’s Grandma Helen in “Sixteen Candles.” In 2006, she also made a guest appearance in an episode of “Grey’s Anatomy.” Carole may be gone but her legacy lives on. Our heart goes out to her family.