‘Hot in Cleveland’ Creator Emotionally Remembers Betty White

by Anna Dunn

The creator of Hot in Cleveland just posted an emotional tribute to Betty White. The iconic actress passed away on New Year’s Eve. She was 99. The creator, Suzanne Martin, reminisced on how the set was a happy place and how sweet Betty White was while on it.

According to Martin, Betty White said that Hot in Cleveland was one of the happiest sets she’s ever worked on. But she brought a ton of happiness with her. White played sassy caretaker Elka. People were absolutely thrilled to see her on the show. And she was an absolute professional.

“When we did the pilot, Betty’s entrance received a three-and-a-half-minute standing ovation. I’d never seen anything like it. Her talent and timing were utterly amazing. In the writer’s room we called her “The Hammer” because she nailed every joke. She was always professional, but it was truly wonderful when she was so tickled by a line that she couldn’t get through it,” Martin wrote.

Martin Wrote about White’s Love of Animals

Betty White was not only a joy on set, but that wasn’t her only trait. Almost anyone who knew her would talk about her love of animals.

“Her love for animals was extraordinary but occasionally frightening — one day I showed up to the set and she was kissing an actual tiger on the mouth (I believe the zoo had brought one by for a visit as a gift to her). I panicked and asked the trainer to move it away, but Betty insisted,” Martin recounted. That love of animals often made its way into the characters she played.

“They say you should never meet your heroes. I’m glad I met mine,” Martin wrote. “Every day working with her was a joy. Every hug from Betty White felt like a little miracle. Everything you want Betty to be she was.”

Betty White Passed Away Right Before Her 100th Birthday

White died just weeks before her 100th birthday. Her work spanned over tons of shows and movies, but many got to know her as the lovable Rose on The Golden Girls.

On top of her advocacy work with Animals, Betty white was also a huge Supporter of American Humane. The charity received an uptick in support following her death.

“Since [Betty White’s] passing, internet traffic has more than doubled, and we have seen a significant increase in donations,” the non-profit said in a statement. “We are so grateful for Betty’s longtime support and she will be dearly missed.”

The outpouring of love and support following Betty White’s passing cannot be understated. For decades, Betty White brought joy and laughter to millions. Now, following her death, she continues to inspire those to do good.