The actress had a six-decade-long career in the entertainment industry

By Tiare Dunlap
April 27, 2015 08:15 PM
Mike FANOUS/Gamma-Rapho via Getty

Jayne Meadows, award-winning actress and widow of talk show host Steve Allen died Sunday of natural causes. She was 95.

Her son Bill confirmed to Entertainment Tonight that his mom passed away peacefully in her Encino, California, home.

Born in China to American missionaries, Meadows had a six-decade-long career in the entertainment industry, from starring roles on Broadway to appearing as a regular panelist on CBS’ I’ve Got a Secret. She started her film career opposite Katharine Hepburn in 1946’s Undercurrent.

Her husband of 46 years, comedian and first host of the Tonight Show Steve Allen, passed away in 2000. Her sister, Audrey Meadows, starred as Jackie Gleason’s wife on The Honeymooners and died in 1996.

Meadows spent seven years touring the U.S. with her one-woman show Powerful Women in History and won a Susan B. Anthony award for her positive portrayals of women.

“She was not only an extraordinarily gifted actress who could move audiences from laughter to tears and back again all in one scene, but she was the greatest story teller I have ever known and I will miss her endlessly fascinating and frequently hilarious anecdotes about her life and the many brilliantly talented people she worked with and befriended along the way,” her son Billy wrote in a letter to Entertainment Tonight. “She will be sorely missed and never forgotten.”

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