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Veteran TV star Mary Tyler Moore, 74, has decided to have surgery to remove a long-present meningioma, a benign tumor in the lining tissue of the brain.
Her rep tells People, "At the recommendation of her neurologist, who has been monitoring this for years, and a neurosurgeon, Mary decided to proceed with this fairly routine procedure." Fairly routine, perhaps, but surgery on the brain is still a scary prospect!
Moore is no a stranger to health problems, having detailed her struggle with Diabetes in her book Growing Up Again: Life, Loves, and Oh Yeah, Diabetes.
Moore first became America's sweetheart with her role as Laura Petrie in the hugely popular The Dick Van Dyke show, epitomizing the sexy humorous housewife so many women aspire to be. But lasting fame came a decade later when she got her own show, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, detailing the trials and tribulations of TV associate producer Mary Richards at a small television station in Minnesota. It struck a chord in viewers, coming, as it did, on the waves of the social upheaval of the late '60s and '70s. Mary Richards represented a new kind of independent career woman, and the show not only launched or cemented the careers of many of her cast members (Ed Asner, Gavin MacLeod, Ted Knight, Valerie Harper, Betty White), but also catapulted Moore to worldwide fame.
She was an inspiration to a generation of women, especially those who were looking for careers in television, including Oprah Winfrey, who recreated the famous opening sequence of The Mary Tyler Moore show during her "Favorite Celebrity Women" tribute in 1997. Of Moore, Oprah said, "I tuned every week to see her 'turn the world on with her smile.'"
Moore's comedic gifts have always been recognized, but she also received an Oscar nomination for best actress in 1980 for her dramatic turn as a chilly perfectionist wife in Robert Redford's acclaimed 1980 flick Ordinary People.
Her life has been marked by tragedy: Her sister Elizabeth died in 1978 from a drug overdose at the age of 21, and just two years later her son Richie died after he accidentally shot himself. She married Robert Levine (her third husband) in 1983. They are still together.
There is no word on when her surgery will take place, but we send Mary Tyler Moore our very best wishes. We know you're gonna "make it after all!"