January 25, 2017 07:00 PM


When Joy Behar thinks about Mary Tyler Moore, she’ll always remember the gas mask she sent her in the mail.

“Right after 9/11 I was at an event with her and both of our husbands and we were talking about what if there was another terrorist attack,” Behar recalls. “A lot of people were suffering from asthma from the fall out of the attack and we were scared.”

The next day, two gas masks arrived from Moore.

“That was the kind of person that she was,” says Behar. “She listened to what you said, took it in and then tried to help you with it. That was a sweet thing she did, and really I liked her a lot. Some people send flowers, she sends gas masks.”

Moore passed away on Wednesday at the age of 80 surrounded by friends and her husband of over 33 years, Dr. S. Robert Levine. According to a source, she had been on a ventilator and had been hospitalized with pneumonia due to complications from her diabetes.

Her longtime rep issued a statement to PEOPLE: “A groundbreaking actress, producer, and passionate advocate for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Mary will be remembered as a fearless visionary who turned the world on with her smile.”

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