Florence Henderson Sudden Death: ‘Brady Bunch’ Star Was Expected To ‘Bounce Back’ From Illness [Video]

On Monday, 82-year-old actress Florence Henderson was spotted in the audience of the “Dancing with the Stars” finale, and on Thursday, the world was learning of her death. What happened? How did the beloved “Brady Bunch” Mom go from seemingly great health to dead in the span of three days? Why was Florence Henderson’s death such a sudden one?

As Fox News reports, Florence Henderson’s death came as a shock to not just the world, but to her family as well. The aging star had always appeared to be the pinnacle of good health, particularly given her advanced years. She was still as beautiful as ever, and Monday’s “Dancing with the Stars” appearance was far from the first time she was seen in the audience of the show. Florence had shown up earlier in the season to support for former TV daughter, Maureen McCormick.

In 2010, Henderson competed on the reality TV dancing show herself.

Despite being in her early 80’s, Florence Henderson could still frequently be counted on to give interviews, make cameos, and was even still actively working as an actress at the time of her death.

All of that changed suddenly, when Florence Henderson, best known for her role as beloved TV mom Carol Brady, suddenly got sick just a few days ago. David Brokaw, Henderson’s publicist, said that her sudden illness wasn’t really seen as a big deal. At least at first.

“She was quite active until she started not feeling well several days ago. It was felt that she would just bounce back from it.”


When Florence fell ill, the last thing on Brokaw’s mind, or the collective minds of her family, was the star’s impending death. In recent months, 82-year-old Henderson had embarked on a paid endorsement deal with LG, and she was the new name and face of their Pro-Bake ranges. Florence Henderson had been using her own social media accounts to promote the products, and the commercials she’d starred in had been posted to her Twitter up until September.


Henderson was even starring in a new series on The Hallmark Channel called “The Eleventh,” and the show began airing in May. In addition to starring in “The Eleventh,” Henderson had actively done promotional interviews for the series.

Ultimately, though, Florence Henderson’s sudden death brought an unexpected end to her active life in the prime of her Golden Years.

According to Henderson’s manager, Kayla Pressman, Florence suffered from an ailment that can be a silent and often sudden killer. Pressman told the world that Florence Henderson had been suffering from heart failure.

Her sudden, unexpected death wasn’t the first time that Florence Henderson had dealt with serious problems with her heart, and she spent a good portion of her time trying to bring awareness to women’s heart problems. According to Henderson, she had suffered from a heart murmur from a young age.

“I knew as a child that I had a heart murmur. As I got older, I was experiencing more irregular heartbeats.”

A heart murmur wasn’t the only heart issue Florence Henderson faced prior to her sudden death on Thanksgiving Day. Just under a decade ago, she required an emergency heart valve repair.

“I was fortunate that I could have a repair. They repaired my valve instead of replacing it.”

Following the news of her unexpected, seemingly sudden death, social media has exploded with condolences for Florence Henderson. They’ve come from her former co-stars (including her TV kids), and thousands of average Americans for whom Henderson will always be Carol Brady, their beloved TV mom.


In the wake of the sudden death of Florence Henderson yesterday, there has been no word regarding memorial arrangement. It has been reported that she passed away surrounded by her loved ones.

[Featured Image by lev radin/Shutterstock]

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