US actor Kirstie Alley has died from cancer at the age of 71, her family has announced.
The star was best known for her breakout role as bar manager Rebecca Howe in the sitcom Cheers from 1987 to 1993.
Kirstie’s children Lillie and True posted a statement announcing their mother’s death on her social media pages.
“To all our friends, far and wide around the world… We are sad to inform you that our incredible, fierce and loving mother has passed away after a battle with cancer, only recently discovered,” they said.
“She was surrounded by her closest family and fought with great strength, leaving us with a certainty of her never-ending joy of living and whatever adventures lie ahead.
“As iconic as she was on screen, she was an even more amazing mother and grandmother.”
Kirstie was best known for playing Rebecca Howe on Cheers
They also paid tribute to Kirstie’s medical team at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Florida for their care.
“Our mother’s zest and passion for life, her children, grandchildren and her many animals, not to mention her eternal joy of creating, were unparalleled and leave us inspired to live life to the fullest just as she did,” they added.
Kirstie’s role on Cheers earned her an Emmy and a Golden Globe award, and she she went on to collect more nominations and awards for her performances in the sitcom Veronica’s Closet, the crime series The Last Don and the TV film David’s Mother.
She also appeared in various films throughout the 1980s and 1990s, including romantic comedy film Look Who’s Talking alongside John Travolta, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Summer School, Sibling Rivalry, It Takes Two , Village Of The Damned, For Richer or Poorer and Drop Dead Gorgeous.
Kirstie Alley and John Travolta pictured in 2019
In 2016, she appeared on the comedy horror series Scream Queens, alongside Jamie Lee Curtis, before going on to appear on the UK version of Celebrity Big Brother in 2018, where she finished as runner-up.
Earlier this year, Kirstie also appeared on the US version of The Masked Singer.
Kirstie appeared on the US version of The Masked Singer earlier this year
Kirstie had been outspoken about politics in recent years and was one of few Hollywood stars to support Donald Trump in the 2016 and 2020 elections.
John Travolta was among the first to pay tribute to Kirstie, writing online: “Kirstie was one of the most special relationships I’ve ever had.
“I love you Kirstie. I know we will see each other again.”