Jeanne Robertson, Motivational Speaker & Former Miss North Carolina, Dies at 77

by Kati Michelle
(Photo by Ed Rode/Getty Images)

Jeanne Robertson joins the growing list of “greats” we’ve had to say goodbye to over the past week, sadly. America’s Tallest Man, Igor Vovkovinskiy, lost his battle to heart disease Friday. Actress and producer, Marilyn Eastman, also passed recently.

The announcement of Robertson’s passing came from her professional Facebook page. The post stays vague about the details surrounding the passing, but does mention Robertson’s health had been giving her issues in the not-so-distant past. Still, the news comes as a shock considering the star was actively working in entertainment even up to a couple of weeks ago. Now, she did have to cancel some appearances recently, but she and her team were fully on board to reschedule them to a later date.

It should be noted that her team previously confirmed the illnesses she suffered from were not COVID-related. The announcement also asks fans to send their support to Jeanne Robertsons’s inner circle.

Jeanne Roberts: An Academic

Jeanne Robertson accomplished a lot of great things in her lifetime both in the entertainment industry and outside of it. Although she remained humble about it, Robertson had a big impact in the world of academia. She was heavily involved with a top 100 National University based in the star’s home of North Carolina.

In addition to advocating for the athletics department and the success of student-athletes with her late husband, Robertson was a member of Elon University’s Campus Life and Athletics Policy committees. Additionally, Robertson also served as a trustee at Elon University, whose President gave the following statement:

“We have lost one of Elon’s greatest friends. Jeanne Robertson loved to tell the Elon story wherever she went, and she backed up her words with active participation at meetings, events, and games; generous gifts to the university; and personal involvement with our students, who she often hosted at her home for team dinners. [she] was passionate about Elon, education, and student success, and we will miss her deeply.”

Jeanne Robertson is Forever ‘Miss Congeniality’ in the Hearts of Thousands of Fans

Robertson started garnering attention at a fairly young age during her time in the pageant world. After earning the title of Miss North Carolina at age 19, Jeanne went on to claim Miss Congeniality at the 1963 Miss America pageant. Eventually, she stepped away from the pageant scene to embrace other ventures in comedy, motivational speaking and even writing. The triple threat actually authored four books.

Jeanne’s most recent book titled “Don’t Bungee Jump Naked And Other Important Stuff” offers short stories from her life with the intent to make people laugh. In a YouTube video she posted that has already surpassed 6 million views, she goes into some of these stories. First, though, she tells the audience that the secret to life is always finding the humor. This philosophy of life followed Jeanne to her final days and it’s how fans are choosing to remember her.

Jeanne’s team will release Celebration of Life details soon, but there are none to report on at this time.