Beth Howland, who played Vera on 'Alice,' dies at 74

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Beth Howland, the actress who was best known for her role as a ditzy waitress on the 1970s and '80s CBS sitcom Alice, has died. She was 74.

Her husband, actor Charles Kimbrough (Murphy Brown), told The Associated Press that Howland died of lung cancer in Santa Monica on Dec. 31. He said there was no funeral or memorial service and "that was her choice."

Howland played naive diner waitress Vera Louise Gorman on Alice for the nine-year run of the comedy that ended in 1985, earning four Golden Globe nominations. Her credits also include parts on the The Mary Tyler Moore Show andThe Love Boat.

See photos of Beth Howland through the years:

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Beth Howland, who played Vera on 'Alice,' dies at 74
alice
Beth Howland, 1960s. (Photo by Film Favorites/Getty Images)
PASADENA, CA - SEPTEMBER 9: Actor Paul Sand and actress Beth Howland attend the 31st Annual Primetime Emmy Awards on September 9, 1979 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
LINDA LAVIN BETH HOWLAND POLLY HOLLIDAY & VIC TAYBACK ALICE (1976)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - APRIL 11: Actress Beth Howland attends the 17th Annual Publicists Guild of America Awards on April 11, 1980 at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
KIDS ARE PEOPLE TOO - Show Coverage - Shoot Date: July 7, 1980. (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images) BETH HOWLAND
LOVE BOAT - 'Farnsworth's Fung/ Three In A Bed/Remember Helen/Merrill, Melanie & Melanesia' which aired on November 21, 1981. (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images) BETH HOWLAND
NEW YORK CITY - JUNE 6: Actress Beth Howland attends the 36th Annual Tony Awards After Party on June 6, 1982 at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES - JANUARY 14: Actress Beth Howland attends the 11th Annual CableACE Awards on January 14, 1990 at the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
CENTURY CITY, CA - OCTOBER 28: Actress Beth Howland and actor Charles Kimbrough attend the National Conference of Christian and Jews' 28th Annual Entertainment Industries Humanitarian Award Dinner on October 28, 1991 at Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
SANTA MONICA, CA - DECEMBER 9: Actress Beth Howland and actor Charles Kimbrough attend Howard Fine Acting Studio's 'Christmas at the Carousel' Third Annual Holiday Party on December 9, 1991 at the Santa Monica Pier Carousel in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
LOS ANGELES - JULY 9: Actor Charles Kimbrough and actress Beth Howland arrive from New York City on July 9, 1993 at the Los Angeles International Airport in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
PASADENA, CA - SEPTEMBER 19: Actor Charles Kimbrough and actress Beth Howland attend the 45th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards on September 19, 1993 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - SEPTEMBER 27: Actress Beth Howland and actor Charles Kimbrough attend Penny Marshall Hosts Party for Garry Marshall's New Book 'Wake Me When It's Funny: How to Break into Show Business and Stay There' on September 27, 1995 at the Monkey Bar in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
NEW YORK CITY - JUNE 20: Actor Charles Kimbrough and actress Beth Howland attend 'The Hunchback of Notre Dame' New York City Premiere on June 20, 1996 at the Ziegfeld Theatre in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
PASADENA, CA - JULY 16: Actress Beth Howland and actor Charles Kimbrough attend the CBS Summer TCA Press Tour on July 16, 1997 at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA- AUGUST 23: Actor Charles Kimbrough and actress Beth Howland attend the First Annual American Comedy Honors on August 23, 1997 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
INGLEWOOD, CA - OCTOBER 29: Actress Beth Howland and actor Charles Kimbrough attend the CBS Television Special 'Scott Hamilton: Back on the Ice' on October 29, 1997 at the Great Western Forum in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
BETH HOWLAND.n1401.(Credit Image: © Bob V. Noble/Globe Photos/ZUMAPRESS.com)
BETH HOWLAND.g7590c.(Credit Image: © Bob V. Noble/Globe Photos/ZUMAPRESS.com)
BETH HOWLAND with Linda Lavin.r8200b.(Credit Image: © Ralph Dominguez/Globe Photos/ZUMAPRESS.com)
BETH HOWLAND Phillip McKeon.n1380.(Credit Image: © Ralph Dominguez/Globe Photos/ZUMAPRESS.com)
July 7, 1980 - LINDA LAVIN with Phillip McKeon , Polly Holliday , Vic Tayback , and Beth Howland.1980.(Credit Image: © Globe Photos/ZUMAPRESS.com)
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Howland is also survived by a daughter from her previous marriage to actor Michael J. Pollard.

See More: Hollywood's Notable Deaths of 2016


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