Singer and actor Olivia Newton-John died Monday morning at her home in Southern California. She was 73.
A statement posted to Newton-John’s official Facebook page and attributed to her husband, John Easterling, did not provide an official cause of death but cited her 30-year public battle with breast cancer.
Born in England and raised in Melbourne, Newton-John was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1992. She announced in May 2017, however, that the disease had spread to her lower back after 25 years in remission, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The following year, Newton-John was forced to cancel a two-date tour just three weeks after announcing it, the entertainment news site reported.
The Grammy-winning songstress crossed multiple genre lines throughout her decades-long career, knocking out hits on pop, country, adult contemporary and pop charts. While “Physical” earned Newton-John the most airplay, “Grease” fans are more likely to remember the likes of “Hopelessly Devoted” and “You’re the One That I Want,” which she performed as Sandy for the film version of the wildly successful play.
Newton-John, whose sales topped 100 million albums, had 14 top 10 singles in the United States between 1973 and 1983, an incredibly prolific decade of her career during which she also won four Grammys, starred opposite John Travolta in “Grease” and appeared in “Xanadu” with Gene Kelly, The Associated Press reported.
Travolta posted a touching social media tribute to his former onscreen flame, which he signed “Your Danny.”
Since her initial diagnosis at 44, Newton-John had become an advocate for cancer research and awareness, as well as for environmental causes, The Washington Post reported, adding, “She sang for presidents and a pope, the sick and the disabled, and touted music as a form of spiritual therapy, raising millions of dollars to fund the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness and Research Center at Melbourne’s Austin Hospital. Her latest albums featured inspirational music about love, friendship and overcoming trauma.”
Survivors include her husband; daughter Chloe, with whom she collaborated on the dance song “You Have to Believe”; sister Sarah; brother Toby; and nieces and nephews Tottie, Fiona, Brett, Emerson, Charlie, Zac, Jeremy, Randall, Pierz, Jude, Layla, Kira, Tasha, Brin and Valerie, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
©2022 Cox Media Group