Following her death on Monday after a long battle with breast cancer, the globe mourned the loss of Grease icon Olivia Newton John (73). But, aside from her professional contributions to music and film, Olivia Newton-John, an Australian actress, was also an enthusiastic activist and simultaneously worked to help aid in cancer and plant-derived medicinal research. Now, in honor of those philanthropic contributions, Newton-John’s family plans to accept a major honor on the star’s behalf.
Olivia Newton-John to Have State Funeral
According to PEOPLE magazine, Olivia Newton-John’s niece, Tottie Goldsmith (59), was able to bid her aunt goodbye just a few days before the Grease star’s tragic death. In speaking about the Australian-American icon, Goldsmith shared a multitude of stories about the Sandy Olsson actress, including her perspective on death, her philanthropic endeavors, and more. But, also during her appearance on Australia’s A Current Affair with host Tracy Grimshaw, Goldsmith also revealed that she and the rest of Olivia Newton-John’s family plan to accept the offer of a state funeral.
Per the outlet, the premier of the Australian state of Victoria, Daniel Andrews, officially made the offer for a state funeral. Andrews further confirmed the family’s acceptance of Olivia Newton-John’s state funeral on Tuesday, stating the nation aims to highlight all of the actress’s “amazing contributions.”
In speaking about Newton-John, Andrews said, “She took her cancer journey and used that to save lives and change lives, and that’s just a deeply impressive thing. The research that’s done there [at the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness & Research Centre], the treatment, the care, the love and support that is central to that place is a lasting legacy to the person that she was.”
Of the family’s decision to move forward with a state funeral, Newton-John’s niece said, “We will [accept], on behalf of not just our family, but I think Australia needs it. She’s so loved.”
Bindi Irwin, Fellow Aussie, Shares Touching Tribute to ‘Grease’ Star
As much as the world adored Olivia Newton-John, she’s not the only Aussie to garner worldwide admiration on TV. Bindi Irwin, daughter of the late Steve Irwin (aka the Crocodile Hunter), has also earned an adoring fanbase, and, taking to Instagram following the Grease star’s death, the wildlife prodigy had a sweet tribute to share in honor of the actress and singer.
“One of the kindest and most wonderful souls the world has ever known,” Irwin wrote below the photo. Tacking on a pair of praying hands, Irwin’s post saw lots of love from fans.
“She was a beautiful light in the world,” one of Irwin’s followers said of Olivia Newton-John. A second responded, “So true Bindi…Olivia was [a] beautiful soul in every way.”