Actress Patty Duke dead at 69

Posted at 12:52 PM, Mar 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-29 13:58:34-04

Actress Patty Duke attends a ceremony honoring her with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame August 17, 2004 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Vince Bucci/Getty Images)

Patty Duke, the actress who won fame with her stage and screen portrayals of Helen Keller in “The Miracle Worker,” died Tuesday, according to her agent.

She was 69.

Duke died of sepsis from a ruptured intestine, according to a statement from Mitchell K. Stubbs & Associates, the agency that represented her.

Duke won an Academy Award in 1963 for her portrayal of Helen Keller in “The Miracle Worker,” a role she also played to acclaim on Broadway.

She was also known for roles in “Valley of the Dolls,” “My Sweet Charlie” and “Me, Natalie,” as well as for the “The Patty Duke Show,” which aired from 1963 to 1966.

Duke’s son , actor Sean Astin posted a family statement and a sweet photo to Facebook following the death of his mother.

The photo shows him as a baby with a young Patty. She was 69 years old when she passed away Tuesday.

Here’s what the post said:

I love you mom.


This morning, our beloved wife, mother, grandmother, matriarch and the exquisite artist, humanitarian, and champion for mental health, Anna PATTY DUKE Pearce, closed her eyes, quieted her pain and ascended to a beautiful place. We celebrate the infinite love and compassion she shared through her work and throughout her life.