Dame Down! Glam Flags are flying at half-staff this Saturday afternoon as we receive the news that violet-eyed screen gem Elizabeth Taylor, who will celebrate her 79th birthday later this month, has been hospitalized with heart failure.
Taylor won Academy Awards for her roles in Butterfield 8 in 1960 and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? in 1966. Concerns over the Hollywood legend’s health were raised after she failed to appear at the amfAR 25th anniversary event on Tueday, where she was scheduled to be honored by the AIDS research organization.
“Elizabeth Taylor was hospitalized earlier this week when she was taken to Cedars-Sinai suffering from symptoms caused by congestive heart failure, an ongoing condition. This issue is being addressed. She is currently being kept in the hospital for monitoring,” Sally Morrison, longtime rep for the double Oscar winner, said Friday.
“Her family and close friends are appreciative of the warm support and interest of her loyal fans but have asked that people respect her privacy and allow her medical team the time and space to focus on restoring her back to health.”
Championed for her HIV/AIDS charity work, the former child star has been in ill health in recent years and is even confined to a wheelchair. In 1997, Elizabeth underwent surgery to have a brain tumor. She was hospitalized in July 2008 and again the following year, when she underwent heart surgery to repair a “leaky valve.”
“It’s like having a brand new ticker… Thank you for your prayers and good wishes. I know they all helped. Love you, Elizabeth,” she Tweeted after the surgery.
Just this week, Taylor was the subject of an Harper’s Bazaar tribute issue, featuring socialite Kim Kardashian in character as one of Elizabeth’s most famous roles, Cleopatra.
“I never planned to acquire a lot of jewels or a lot of husbands,” she told Kim. “For me, life happened, just as it does for anyone else. I have been supremely lucky in my life in that I have known great love, and of course I am the temporary custodian of some incredible and beautiful things. But I have never felt more alive than when I watched my children delight in something, never more alive than when I have watched a great artist perform, and never richer than when I have scored a big check to fight AIDS. Follow your passion, follow your heart, and the things you need will come.”