Melissa Gilbert Mourns Death Of “Little House” Co-Star

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Hersha Parady, the actress best known for her role as Alice Garvey on “Little House on the Prairie,” died Wednesday at the age of 78.

Parady’s son, Jonathan Peverall, shared the news of his mother’s death to The Hollywood Reporter saying that his mother passed away at his home in Norfolk, Virginia, after battling a brain tumor, called meningioma.

Peverall set up a GoFundMe account to help cover his mother’s expenses prior to her death and shared updates on his mom’s health in recent months. On the account he shared, “This illness has robbed her of her strength, her memory, and sadly, her vibrant personality. She has become largely bedridden, and it is very difficult to see my Mom, who was once full of life and energy, now struggling with basic daily activities.”

Hersha Parady, the actress who portrayed Alice Garvey on Little House on the Prairie

On July 14, Hersha underwent surgery in an effort to improve her quality of life and help her regain some of her functions. But, the actress suffered a setback when she developed pneumonia while in rehab following the surgery.

“For the past week, she has been in the ICU on a ventilator, and while there have been some moments of clarity, she has been unable to fully wake up. The medical team is actively investigating potential causes for her current condition, which may include post-surgical complications, seizures, medication, or any combination of factors. At this point, they are working to assess her mental condition more accurately,” her son wrote on July 31.

Parady never fully recovered from the surgery and ultimately succumbed to her illness on August 23.

Some of Hersha Parady’s “Little House on the Prairie” cast mates honored her by sharing memories on social media.

Melissa Gilbert, who portrayed lead character Laura Ingalls, remembered the actress as “Bawdy, ballsy, sexy, funny, warm, generous, talented, kind, hilarious, brilliant.”

Alison Arngrim, the actress who filled the role of series villain Nellie Oleson, also paid tribute to Parady, saying “The world will be a less colorful place…”


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Hersha Parady on “Little House on the Prairie”

Hersha Perady was originally being considered for the role of Caroline “Ma” Ingalls prior to Karen Grassle’s hire. She made her “Little House on the Prairie” debut in a Season 3 episode where she portrayed Charles Ingalls’ sister-in-law.

Parady returned to “Little House” in September 1977 on the Season 4 premiere. She appeared on the series as Alice Garvey, the wife of Jonathan Garvey who was portrayed by former NFL star Merlin Olsen. Her character ultimately perished in a fire during the show’s sixth season.