Florence Henderson remembered for her ties to Indiana

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EXCLUSIVE - Maureen McCormick, from left, Florence Henderson, and Barbara Chase attend the Television Academy’s 70th Anniversary Gala and Opening Celebration for its new Saban Media Center on June 2, 2016, in the NoHo Arts District in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision for the Television Academy/AP Images)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Florence Henderson, the wholesome actress who went from Broadway star to television icon when she became Carol Brady, the ever-cheerful mom residing over “The Brady Bunch,” has died. She was 82.

She died surrounded by family and friends, her manager, Kayla Pressman, said in a statement late Thursday.

Millions loved, and kept on loving, the innocent sitcom about a blended family. “The Brady Bunch,” first aired in 1969, returned to television in various forms again and again, including “The Brady Bunch Hour” in 1977, “The Brady Brides” in 1981 and “The Bradys” in 1990. It was also seen endlessly in reruns.

The president of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is remembering actress Florence Henderson as a “lovely lady” who sang nearly two dozen times during Indianapolis 500 pre-race festivities.

Speedway President Doug Boles said in a Friday statement that Henderson had a passion for the “special moments” leading up to the command for drivers to start their engines for the annual race, held each May.

Between 1991 and 2015, she sang “America the Beautiful,” ”God Bless America” or “The Star-Spangled Banner” 23 times during pre-race festivities. She was grand marshal for this year’s race.

Henderson was born in the small southern Indiana town of Dale, the 10th child of a tobacco sharecropper.

 

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