Denise Nickerson has died.
The 62-year-old former actress – who played Violet Beauregarde in ‘Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory‘ – was rushed to hospital on Monday (08.07.19) after her relatives found she had taken as much of her prescription medication as she could.
Doctors diagnosed her with pneumonia but on Tuesday (09.07.19), she was placed on life support after suffering a massive seizure.
They removed the respirator which was helping her to breathe and stopped giving her medicine and said it was just a matter of time until she passes away.
And on Wednesday (10.07.19), the family confirmed in a Facebook post: “She’s gone.”
The ‘Zero to Sixty star’s son Josh Nickerson and his wife Jasmine were by her hospital bedside and also set up a GoFundMe page to raise money to fulfil Denise’s last wish of being cremated and having her ashes turned into glass artwork.
Last year, Denise – who quit acting in 1978 to become a nurse – spent time in intensive care after suffering a stroke and her family later revealed she had had a pacemaker fitted and would likely need “24 hour care” for the rest of her life.
Jasmine spoke about her health situation via Facebook last June. She wrote: “It’s a waiting game. It’s the worst. She’s breathing on her own but they can’t remove the ventilator today because they don’t think she has the strength to cough and not aspirate.
“And know we’re faced with do we put her in a nursing home? Does one of us quit and stay with her constantly? We can’t afford to do either. We’ll be homeless.
“Her heart, her brain, and her lungs all fought against her yesterday. Did we do what she wanted? (sic)”
Before landing the role alongside the late Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka in the 1971 children’s classic, Denise portrayed Allison in The Short Circus in ‘Sesame Street’ spin-off ‘The Electric Company’ and in ‘Dark Shadows’ she played Amy Jennings, Nora Collins, Amy Collins between 1968 to 1970.
The actress also appeared in the soap opera ‘Search for Tomorrow’ and had a number of big screen roles, before she retired from acting at the age of 21.
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