THE PROPOSAL, Betty White, 2009. Ph: Kerry Hayes/©Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection
Credit: Walt Disney Co./Courtesy of the Everett Collection

It’s a day that we always knew would eventually come — and still hoped against hope wouldn’t.

Take a minute. We know we needed several — and we may not be done yet. Betty White died on December 31 at the age of 99, per TMZ.

And there’s almost no way to overstate the loss. There’s almost no way to wrap our heads around it. It seemed as if the alum of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Golden Girls and pretty much every game show that ever existed had been a part of our lives since… Well, since we’d been alive.

For a lot of us, that isn’t even an exaggeration.

Over the course of her unparalleled showbiz career, White had done it all, from host the Tournament of Roses Parade to steal whole movies out from under leads like Sandra Bullock and that giant crocodile in Lake Placid.

Betty White"The Bold and the Beautiful" SetCBS Television CityLos Angeles10/31/07©Aaron Montgomery/jpistudios.com310-657-9661Episode # 5204Air Date 12/10/07

To us, of course, she is perhaps most vividly remembered for her mid-2000s run on The Bold and the Beautiful as Ann Douglas, a Mommie Dearest so chilly, she damn near gave our TVs frost burn before copping to her sins and making peace with daughters Stephanie and Pam. In this role, we got a White that was anything but black-and-; the actress was at first a monster, then a monster we understood, and finally, a fatally flawed human for whom we could feel actual compassion.

Betty White, Susan Flannery, John McCook, Ally Mills "The Bold and the Beautiful" Set Honoring Lee Bell CBS Television City Los Angeles 10/27/06 ©Brian Lowe/ 310-657-9661

In her later years, the indefatigable crowd pleaser turned a one-off appearance in the pilot for Hot in Cleveland into a five-year run as bawdy Elka Ostrovsky, hosted and executive-produced Betty White’s Off Their Rockers, and added a Grammy to her massive trophy case for the spoken-word recording of her best-seller, If You Ask Me (And of Course You Won’t).

On this devastating occasion, as you try to work through your reactions, hear what White’s Bold & Beautiful co-stars have to say about her, then stop off at the below photo gallery, a tribute to all the stars that have been taken from us in 2021.