Olivia Newton-John has penned a heartfelt tribute to her friend Helen Reddy, one day after it was revealed that the trailblazing Australian singer had passed away at the age of 78.
The iconic singer, who was born in Melbourne in 1941, died on Tuesday afternoon in Los Angeles. Reddy’s daughters Traci and Jordan confirmed the news in a statement on their mother’s official Facebook page on Wednesday morning.
“It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved mother, Helen Reddy, on the afternoon of September 29th 2020 in Los Angeles,” they wrote. “She was a wonderful Mother, Grandmother and a truly formidable woman.
“Our hearts are broken. But we take comfort in the knowledge that her voice will live on forever.”
The 72-year-old Grease star paid tribute to the ‘I Am Woman’ hitmaker via social media on Thursday, thanking her for paving the way for her own successful career in the United States.
“Helen Reddy encouraged me and paved the way for my success in the USA,” she wrote on Instagram, alongside a black and white photograph of the duo together. “Thank you Helen for your friendship, your voice and your passion for women’s rights – you will be missed.”
Many other celebrities have paid tribute to Reddy since the news of her passing broke, including The Greatest Showman star Hugh Jackman who said: “A trailblazer with a voice as smooth as silk. Gone too soon. My thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends.”
Hollywood star Jamie Lee Curtis wrote on social media: “Honour of my life. Introducing Helen at the Women’s March, January 2017! THANK YOU Helen. RIP.”
And her ex-husband Jeff Wald said: “I am v sad to announce that my first wife of 18 years and the mother of my two oldest Traci & Jordan. Traci spent the morning with Helen and she passed soon after under the excellent care of the Motion & Television Home. #Helen Reddy.”
Best known for her 1971 feminist anthem ‘I Am Woman’, Reddy’s life was recently made into a movie of the same name. In 1973 she became the first Australian to win a Grammy and, when accepting her award, famously thanked God on stage, saying “she makes everything possible”.
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