Valerie Harper's husband Tony Cacciotti broke his silence following the actress' death. In a message posted Friday by daughter Cristina Cacciotti, Tony shared heartwarming words about his wife of 32 years. The Mary Tyler Moore Show star died Friday at 10:06 a.m. after fighting cancer since 2009.
In Cristina's message, Tony wrote about how his beloved will "never, ever be forgotten."
My dad has asked me to pass on this message: “My beautiful caring wife of nearly 40 years has passed away at 10:06am, after years of fighting cancer.
She will never, ever be forgotten. Rest In Peace, mia Valeria. -Anthony.”— Cris (@cristicacci) August 30, 2019
Fans of the television icon responded to Cristina's post, seeing well wishes to the family during their time of grief.
"So very sorry for the loss of your mom," one user commented.
"Profoundly sorry for your loss of your Mother and your Father's guiding love life. May her warmth, warm heart & soul fill you both as you grieve through this moment & days to come. #Blessings #Gratitude for a Life Fully Embraced. #RIPValerieHarper #MayCondolencesWrapYourHearts," another fan wrote.
"I'm so sorry.... xo I was a kid in the 1970s but I now watch your mom’s reruns w/my husband when I need a taste of Times gone by when things were lighter & filled w/people who loved to make people laugh," another fan wrote.
Harper was first diagnosed with lung cancer in 2009, which she beat the same year. IN 2013, doctors diagnosed her with leptomeningeal carcinomatosis, a rare form of incurable brain cancer. PEOPLE writes the condition occurs when cancer cells spread into the fluid-filled membrane surrounding the brain, known as the meninges.
Doctors told the actress at the time she only had three months to live, but she went on to surpass expectations. She outlived her "soulmate" Mary Tyler Moore, who passed away in 2017 at the age of 80.
Harper and Tony tied the knot in 1987 nine years after she finalized her divorce from first husband, actor Richard Schaal. Tony was Harper's former fitness advisor.
When she first met Tony, Harper told the publication in 1980, "I thought, 'What a beautiful, giving teacher.' Although I'm a feminist and think it's terrific to call a man if you're comfortable, I don't do it. I don't set my cap for a guy unless he makes the first move."
Ed Asner, who co-starred on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, released his own tribute to the actress on Twitter, writing: "A beautiful woman, a wonderful actress, a great friend and with balls bigger than mine. Her brilliance burst through and shined its light upon all of us. Goodnight beautiful. I'll see you soon."