Barbara 'Babs' Thore, 'My Big Fat Fabulous Life' Mom, Dead at 76

My Big Fat Fabulous Life star Barbara "Babs" Thore died on Dec. 7. She was 76. Thore was the mother of Whitney Way Thore, the main subject of the hit TLC series. My Big Fat Fabulous Life launched in 2015 and follows Whitney's life and her goal to lose weight.

Whitney shared the sad news on Instagram Thursday. Thore died surrounded by her daughter, son Hunter, and her husband, Glenn Thore. She passed away at 10:32 p.m., the same time she gave birth to Whitney on April 14, 1984. Whitney included a tribute video to her mother, sharing intimate family photos from their life together.

The cause of death was cerebral amyloid angiopathy, Whitney wrote. It is "an untreatable progressive condition caused by proteins in the blood vessels of the brain that can cause dementia, seizures, or like in my mom's case, brain bleeding (hemorrhagic strokes)," the TLC star explained. According to Whitney, they learned of Thorne had the condition after he suffered her first stroke in 2017. Thore suffered another stroke on Dec. 28, 2021, and on Nov. 13.

"My mother is our family's greatest gift," Whitney continued. "We could never love, revere, or value another person more. If you're reading this, you're familiar with her magic: her southern charm, her hilarious sense of humor, her well-timed witty remarks, her beauty, and her ability to make everyone around her feel comfortable and cared for. But what you can't possibly understand is the extent of my mother's love – what you may have witnessed and felt through a TV screen is a minute fraction that, even if multiplied by a million, wouldn't come close to 'real life.' That's how enormous, how generous, and how all-encompassing my mother's love was. I am the luckiest person on the planet to have been hers for almost 39 years."

Whitney ended her heartbreaking post with a message to her fans. She thanked them for falling in love with her mother through reality television. Her surprising television career "delighted" Thorne, Whitney wrote. She noted that the love and support Thore got from fans made her "feel so loved and encouraged."

0comments

"We are unbelievably thankful that we've been able to share her with you and it is our hope that her memory will continue to be a source of comfort and happiness for the rest of your lives, just as it will be for ours," Whitney wrote. "I love you, Mommy."

My Big Fat Fabulous Life debuted in January 2015, months after Whitney became a viral star thanks to a dance video called "A Fat Girl Dancing." The radio producer has used her platform to promote body acceptance and a positive body image. Her family was featured on the show, with Season 10 focusing on Thore's recovery from one of her strokes. TLC has not announced plans for Season 11 yet.