Screen Icon and AIDS Activist Elizabeth Taylor Dead at 79


Dame Elizabeth Taylor, screen legend and tireless champion of people with HIV/AIDS, died from congestive heart failure at Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles early today. What a great loss.

ABC News:

"She was surrounded by her children- Michael Wilding, Christopher Wilding, Liza Todd, and Maria Burton," Taylor's publicist, Sally Morrison, said in a statement.

In addition to her children, Taylor is survived by 10 grand children and four great grandchildren.

Taylor had been hospitalized six weeks ago with congestive heart failure. Though she had recently suffered a number of complications, her condition had stabilized and it was hoped that she would be able to return home.

Watch Taylor speak about her AIDS activism, AFTER THE JUMP...

Said her son Michael Wilding to ABC News:

"My Mother was an extraordinary woman who lived life to the fullest, with great passion, humor, and love. Though her loss is devastating to those of us who held her so close and so dear, we will always be inspired by her enduring contribution to our world. Her remarkable body of work in film, her ongoing success as a businesswoman, and her brave and relentless advocacy in the fight against HIV/AIDS, all make us all incredibly proud of what she accomplished. We know, quite simply, that the world is a better place for Mom having lived in it. Her legacy will never fade, her spirit will always be with us, and her love will live forever in our hearts."

The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation released the following statement on its website: "We mourn the loss of legendary actress, businesswoman, and fearless activist Elizabeth Taylor. If you want to honor the memory of Elizabeth, you may do so either by making a contribution in her name to the foundation or by posting a personal message here.

Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation [website]

Thank you, Elizabeth.

Here's a clipping via Good As You from 1985:


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  1. Oh my goodness. How I have feared this day for so long! May Dame Elizabeth rest in peace.

    Posted by: Smell The Coffee | Mar 23, 2011 9:37:01 AM

  2. Our community has lost a great STAR. Elizabeth was a terrific GLBT advocate, especially in her early support of the fight against AIDS, when such advocacy wasn't cool. She'll be truly missed. May she rest in peace.

    Posted by: Rob | Mar 23, 2011 9:41:05 AM

  3. Bless you Elizabeth.
    You were lucky to be part of what was,but sadly is no longer a wonderful movie industry.
    An industry that had real stars (not so called celebrities) & did not rely on effects or lewd language to get bums on seats (not that i mind either).
    I always think of that print of the deceased actors drinking in the bar.That bar must be pretty full by now.

    Posted by: John | Mar 23, 2011 9:47:34 AM

  4. An old school Movie Star who also worked tirelessly to make the world a better place. We won't see her like again.


    Posted by: The Milkman | Mar 23, 2011 9:47:44 AM

  5. This is a deep and sad loss, yet her glorious legend will live on and on. There will never be another Elizabeth Taylor. Her beauty, generosity , love and wit is unrivaled. As a friend said to me many many years ago, "I can't imagine a world with out Liz" That sad day has come. She is an angel among angels. Sadness for all on this forum and everyone around the world. She dedicated her life to our cause and was a icon of the highest order.
    Thank You Elizabeth Taylor for giving so much love and hope to our sad world.

    Posted by: Max F. Grump | Mar 23, 2011 9:58:10 AM

  6. She was on of the best.

    Posted by: Dave | Mar 23, 2011 9:59:53 AM

  7. Elizabeth T / Forever in our hearts and / on that hot tin roof

    Posted by: Jeff in Brooklyn | Mar 23, 2011 10:04:51 AM

  8. :(

    Simply speechless.

    An incomprable diva.

    Posted by: Chitown Kev | Mar 23, 2011 10:06:17 AM

  9. When I used to visit sick friends at Davies Memorial in San Francisco back in the mid-80's, they would wheel in the "Elizabeth Taylor" cart with a TV, VCR, movies, etc. I remember seeing her name on the plaque and being grateful that my friends knew this kind and beautiful woman was there for them when nobody else was.

    Posted by: Jonster | Mar 23, 2011 10:07:15 AM

  10. It's perhaps a relief that she's been released from all the pain she's suffered in the last 20 years or so.

    What an actress! "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" is one of my very favorite movies and she's incredible, she holds her own with Burl Ives and the hunky, gorgeous Paul Newman.


    Posted by: Henry Holland | Mar 23, 2011 10:13:03 AM

  11. A real Star. A true Legend. An Icon has left us.

    Posted by: Matt26 | Mar 23, 2011 10:18:17 AM

  12. I really hope she is up there somewhere with Richard. After reading Furious Love there is no one else I would want to imagine her in Heaven with.

    Posted by: Rin | Mar 23, 2011 10:23:10 AM

  13. Do not stand at my grave and weep.
    I am not there. I do not sleep.
    I am a thousand winds that blow,
    I am the diamond glints on snow.
    I am the sunlight on ripened grain,
    I am the gentle autumn rain.
    When you awake in the morning's hush
    I am the swift uplifting rush
    Of quiet birds in circled flight.
    I am the soft star-shine at night.
    Do not stand at my grave and cry.
    I am not there. I did not die.

    Posted by: Bading | Mar 23, 2011 10:41:27 AM

  14. We lost a great friend and pioneer. Rest in peace Elizabeth, you will be sorely missed.

    Posted by: Andrew D. | Mar 23, 2011 10:44:30 AM

  15. An Earth Mother and Class Act, Liz was a friend to our community from way back. If you've never seen "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?", check out how riveting an actress she could be, too. Thanks for improving life on the planet, Liz.

    Posted by: rascal | Mar 23, 2011 10:47:52 AM

  16. The silver screen just dimmed and will never regain Liz's particular luster

    Posted by: Christopher | Mar 23, 2011 10:48:03 AM

  17. Elizabeth Taylor's AIDS activism in the 1980s was an act of courage in a more homophobic culture. She will forever be the cat on a hot tin roof from an age when being married to a gay man wasn't often discussed. Brava!

    Posted by: Phil | Mar 23, 2011 10:49:13 AM

  18. ooops, verse by Mary Frye.

    Posted by: Bading | Mar 23, 2011 10:49:34 AM

  19. God Bless You, Liz, for all the good work you did while you were here with us on Earth. Rest in Peace.

    Posted by: Jack M | Mar 23, 2011 11:24:09 AM

  20. with the hepburns being gone and now, beloved and adored elizabeth, so goes all that was magical about hollywood.

    Posted by: giovanni | Mar 23, 2011 11:35:20 AM

  21. I read once that a person is best remembered in how they left this earth, be it by an act of kindness, a job well done, service to strangers and mankind at whole or even a garden made beautiful.

    Dame Elizabeth you have left your garden well tended. Rest in peace.

    Posted by: patrick nyc | Mar 23, 2011 11:40:12 AM

  22. RIP Ms. Taylor. It's interesting that this post does not mention her numerous acting credits. She was an actress, after all.

    Posted by: Ioann | Mar 23, 2011 11:42:00 AM

  23. Bless Elizabeth. Her heart was bigger than even all her diamonds. Long live her legacy.

    Posted by: Jesse Archer | Mar 23, 2011 11:42:08 AM

  24. @IOANN, I think the post's title: "screen icon" trumps "actress" or any particular role.

    Bless Elizabeth Taylor. Bigger than her talent, beauty, or diamonds was her heart.

    Posted by: Jesse Archer | Mar 23, 2011 11:50:09 AM

  25. I remember as a kid watching Suddenly Last Summer for the first time on TV and marveled at her beauty.I watching this film to the end and thought to myself, Wow, this film was ahead of it's time and have been in love with Ms. Taylor ever since.


    Posted by: Maverick69 | Mar 23, 2011 11:50:16 AM

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