Actress Suzanne Summers died on Sunday morning, Oct. 15, at the age of 76, just one day before her 77th birthday.
Cause of death
She died after ‘an aggressive form of breast cancer for over 23 years,’ her publicist said in a statement.
Suzanne Somers‘ husband, Alan Hamel, gave the ‘Three’s Company’ actress a handwritten letter one day before her death.
Hamel, 87, gifted the poem to Somers as part of an early birthday present. She was supposed to turn 77 today, Oct. 16.
How she died
According to her publicist R. Couri Hay, Hamel ‘gave it to her a day early and she read the poem and went to bed and later died peacefully in her sleep.’
The note was written in all caps and was wrapped in pink peonies.
The note began, ‘Love I use it every day, sometimes several times a day. I use it at the end of emails to my loving family. I even use it in emails to close friends. I use it when I’m leaving the house.
‘There’s love, then love you and I love you!! Therein lies some of the different ways we use love. Sometimes I feel obliged to use love, responding to someone who signed love in their email, when I’m uncomfortable using love but I use it anyway.
‘I also use love to describe a great meal. I use it to express how I feel about a show on Netflix. I often use love referring to my home, my cat Gloria, to things Gloria does, to the taste of a cantaloupe I grew in my garden.
‘I love the taste of a freshly harvested organic royal jumbo medjool date. I love biting a fig off the tree. I love watching two giant blackbirds who live nearby swooping by my window in a power dive.
‘My daily life encompasses things and people I love and things and people I am indifferent to.
‘I could go on ad infinitum, but you get it. What brand of love do I feel for my my wife Suzanne? Can I find it in any of the above? A resounding no!!!! There is no version of the word that is applicable to Suzanne and I even use the word applicable advisedly.
‘The closest version in words isn’t even close. It’s not even a fraction of a fraction of a fraction. Unconditional love does not do it. I’ll take a bullet for you doesn’t do it. I weep when I think about my feelings for you. Feelings… That’s getting close, but not all the way.
’55 years together, 46 married and not even one hour apart for 42 of those years. Even that doesn’t do it. Even going to bed at 6 o’clock and holding hands while we sleep doesn’t do it. Staring at your beautiful face while you sleep doesn’t do it.
‘I’m back to feelings. There are no words. There are no actions. No promises. No declarations. Even the green shaded scholars of the Oxford University Press have spent 150 years and still have failed to come up with that one word. So I will call it, ‘’Us,’’ uniquely, magically, indescribably wonderful ‘’Us.’”
When did Suzanne Summers get married to her husband?
Somers and Hamel tied the knot in 1977. She has a son, Bruce, 57, from her marriage to Bruce Somers, which ended in 1968.
She was also a stepmom to Hamel’s children, Stephen and Leslie Hamel. Somers’ family will gather Monday to ‘celebrate her extraordinary life.’
A private family burial will also take place this week, with a memorial to follow next month.
The author is survived by Alan, her three children and six grandchildren.