The In Memoriam segment of the 29th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards featured Leslie Jordan, Anne Heche, and Cindy Williams, among other celebrities.
During the 2023 SAG Awards, the Screen Actors Guild paid tribute to the celebrities who had passed away in the previous year.
Stars like Olivia Newton-John, Kirstie Alley, Leslie Jordan, Barbara Walters, Angela Lansbury, Raquel Welch, Richard Belzer, Cindy Williams, Anne Heche, and others were remembered in the moving video montage that was shown during the awards ceremony on Sunday.
We were their friends, colleagues, and fans, regardless of relationship, and we knew and loved the actors that we loved and lost last year, Don Cheadle, 58, said to start the emotional moment.
“We went on unforgettable journeys with them; they told us the best stories,” he continued. Cheadle praised the late actors, actresses, and TV personalities for performing in front of their adoring audiences at home.
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On August 8, five years after disclosing her diagnosis of breast cancer that had spread to her sacrum, Newton-John passed away. In 1992, the four-time Grammy Award winner disclosed her initial breast cancer diagnosis.
Her daughter shared a number of pictures of Newton-John and her over the years on social media on the day that John Easterling posted the news of her passing. Three days earlier, Chloe Lattanzi posted a picture of the two of them posing in a field.
I worship this woman. She’s my mother and my best friend. @therealonj, she wrote in the Instagram caption.
When they made the announcement of their mother’s passing, Alley’s children revealed that she had been privately battling cancer just before she passed away. Alley rose to fame in Hollywood as Rebecca Howe on the television show Cheers.
Alley Parker’s parents, True and Lillie Parker, revealed for the first time in a statement to PEOPLE that she passed away on December 5 and that her cancer diagnosis came “only recently.”
In a statement, they said, “We are sad to inform you that our incredible, fierce, and loving mother has passed away after a battle with cancer, which was only recently discovered.”
Alley’s children provided additional details about the Cheers star’s final moments, saying that “she fought with great strength while surrounded by her closest family, leaving us with a certainty of her never-ending joy of living and whatever adventures lie ahead.”
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On October 24, Jordan, 67, perished in a car accident following what appeared to be a medical emergency. Later that day, the information was released on his official Instagram after PEOPLE provided confirmation.
As Beverley Leslie in Will & Grace, which won him a 2006 Primetime Emmy for outstanding guest actor in a comedy series, Jordan was most well-known for scene-stealing performances.
In films and television shows like The Help, Murphy Brown, Ugly Betty, Boston Public, and American Horror Story, he made an appearance. At the time of his passing, he was a featured actor on Fox’s Call Me Kat.
Heche was removed from life support on August 14, which was nine days after the tragic car accident she was involved in on August 5.
Heche was declared legally dead in the state of California on August 12; however, her heart continued to beat until Aug. 14 to ensure that her organs could be donated in accordance with her wishes. The actress remained in a coma for nearly a week before it was revealed on Aug. 12 that she was “not expected to survive.”
Heche is survived by her 13-year-old son Atlas and her 20-year-old son Homer, both of whom she had with her ex-husband Coley Laffoon.
Richard Belzer, an actor, comedian, and writer best known for his two decades as John Munch on Homicide: Life on the Streets and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, passed away on February 19 at the age of 78.
Bill Scheft, a former writer for The Late Show with David Letterman, confirmed the death to PEOPLE. He said, “F—- you, motherf—-er,” according to Scheft, who spoke to PEOPLE. Belzer passed away “peacefully with family by his side” at his home in Bozouls, southwest France, according to Scheft.
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In an exclusive statement to PEOPLE, the star of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit’s family said they were “overwhelmed” by the love and admiration they had received from Richard’s “family, friends, acquaintances, and admirers.”
Belzer’s family adds, “It has been really helpful for us, his family, in getting through this difficult time, so thank you.” We’ve been holding off on releasing a statement about his passing because, despite having a number of challenging but non-terminal health issues, he passed away as a result of a quite sudden decline in health that completely caught us off guard.
Netflix’s YouTube channel broadcast the 2023 SAG Awards ceremony live from the Fairmont Century Plaza in Los Angeles.