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OBITUARY: LINDLEY, 79, LANDLADY ON `THREE'S COMPANY'.

Byline: Associated Press

Audra Lindley, best known for her portrayal of Helen Roper on television's ``Three's Company,'' died of complications from leukemia. She was 79.

Lindley died Thursday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles after being hospitalized for three weeks, said Debbie Beard, Lindley's business manager.

She continued to work up until one month ago when she was did a taping of the CBS series ``Cybill'' as a mother to Cybill Shepherd's character, Beard said. Lindley was diagnosed with leukemia earlier this year.

``She was very headstrong,'' Beard said. ``We all just couldn't believe (she died) because she was so tough. She had a heart of gold.''

Lindley appeared as Helen Roper, the sexually frustrated landlady on the sitcom ``Three's Company,'' from 1977 to 1979. Lindley and Norman Fell, who played her husband, starred in a spinoff sitcom called ``The Ropers'' from 1979 to 1980.

Beard said Lindley's credits, however, extended far beyond ``Three's Company.''

She appeared in recent years in the film ``The Relic,'' had a recurring role on ``Cybill'' and played Phoebe's grandmother on the sitcom ``Friends.''

She also joined legendary TV moms Barbara Billingsley, Florence Henderson and June Lockhart in a special Mother's Day episode of NBC-TV's ``The Mommies'' in 1994.

She worked extensively in theater with roles in ``Handy Dandy,'' ``Take Her, She's Mine'' and ``Death of a Salesman,'' for which she won The Citadel Best Actress Award, Beard said.

Lindley was married to actor James Whitmore ``off and on for 20 years,'' but never had children with him, Beard said. She had five children from a previous marriage.

Lindley is survived by two daughters, Dr. Elizabeth Blalock and Alice Ulm; one son, William Ulm; and seven grandchildren. Two children preceded her in death.

Private services were scheduled for Friday in Santa Monica. Lindley will be buried near her parents in a cemetery there. She asked that donations be made to the Red Cross.

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PHOTO Audra Lindley

``Had a heart of gold''
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Article Type:Obituary
Date:Oct 19, 1997
Words:330
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