‘Little House on the Prairie’ Star Melissa Gilbert Blasts ‘Death Hoax’

by Taylor Cunningham
(Photo by Bobby Bank/Getty Images)

Melissa Gilbert would like her fans to know that she’s alive and well—despite a strange internet rumor that’s saying otherwise.

Today, Gilbert’s fans woke up to the news that the Little House on the Prairie star died on Oct. 26. Gilbert also woke up to the headlines, which she admits was an odd experience. So she’s asking people to stop spreading lies.

On her Instagram page, the actress posted a picture that reads, “That moment when you wake up to a google alert that you’re DEAD.” And she explained that not only is she still with us, but she’s not even close to death’s door.

“Rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated,” she joked while quoting Mark Twain, who was one of the earliest victims of the dreaded celebrity death hoax.

“It would be funny if I didn’t have a husband, mom, sister, kids, grandkids, friends, and a career….whomever is doing this, knock it off! #deathhoax,” she added

Melissa Gilbert Death Rumors Began on YouTube and Spread to Other Social Media Sites

According to SK Pop, rumors of Melissa Gilbert’s death began on YouTube. Several channels, such as Allan Radio, Nene Star News, Deceased Celebrities, and Celebs Kids News, said that she was either a victim of a fatal car crash or she passed from longtime health problems.

Those rumors quickly made their way onto Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, where people desperately asked others to verify or debunk the claim.

“Why are people reporting #melissagilbert as dead??? Click on YouTube. WTF?” wrote one concerned fan.

However, no reputable news sites pushed the headline, so many people immediately assumed the whole story was a joke. And now that the actress herself has spoken out, people are relieved to know we haven’t lost yet another cherished classic TV star.

To make matters worse, the lies spread only one day after a Jerry Lee Lewis death hoax took hold. And that rumor even made it to major publications.

TMZ reported the death on Wednesday, Oct. 28, after receiving a bad tip. The story held more credibility because Lewis’ sister posted on Facebook that the singer was unwell the day before.

“I was on YouTube last night and it was reported that Melissa Gilbert (Laura Ingles Wilder) was dead too,” another Twitter user commented on a Jerry Lewis post. “Lord these people would want to check their facts before going public. Such unprofessional reporting can be damaging.”