Actress Kirstie Alley has died at the age of 71 after a brief battle with cancer, her family announced on her official Twitter page Monday.
“She was surrounded by her closest family and fought with great strength, leaving us with a certainty of her never-ending joy of living and whatever adventures lie ahead,” her family said.
Alley’s cancer was only recently discovered. She had been receiving treatment at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida.
“Our mother’s zest and passion for life, her children, grandchildren and her many animals, not to mention her eternal joy of creating, were unparalleled and leave us inspired to live life to the fullest just as she did,” True and Lillie Park said.
Alley won an Emmy for her starring role as the sultry, snobbish bar manager Rebecca Howe on the hit sitcom, “Cheers” from 1987-1993. She also starred in dozens of television shows and films, including “Look Who’s Talking,” “Loverboy,” and “Drop Dead Gorgeous.”
“Kirstie was one of the most special relationships I’ve ever had,” actor John Travolta, Alley’s co-star from “Look Who’s Talking,” posted to Instagram. “I love you Kirstie. I know we will see each other again.”
In recent years she appeared on several other reality shows, including a second-place finish on “Dancing With the Stars” in 2011. She appeared on the competition series “The Masked Singer” wearing a baby mammoth costume earlier this year.
She appeared in the Ryan Murphy black comedy series “Scream Queens” on Fox in 2015 and 2016.
One of her co-stars on the show, Jamie Lee Curtis, said on Instagram Monday that Alley was “a great comic foil” on the show and “a beautiful mama bear in her very real life.”
Alley’s “Cheers” co-star Kelsey Grammer said in a statement that “I always believed grief for a public figure is a private matter, but I will say I loved her.”
Another “Cheers” co-star, Rhea Perlman, recounted how she and Alley became friends almost instantly after she joined the show. She said Alley organized large Easter and Halloween parties and invited everyone. “She wanted everyone to feel included. She loved her children deeply. I’ve never met anyone remotely like her. I feel so thankful to have known her.”
A native of Wichita, Kansas, Alley attended Kansas State University before dropping out and moving to Los Angeles.
Alley’s first television appearances were as a game show contestant, on “The Match Game” in 1979 and Password” in 1980.
She made her film debut in 1982’s “Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Note: a previous version of this story incorrectly spelled Alley’s first name.