Estelle Gettys Son Speaks to Inside Edition
Gettleman: "She had a very strong will to live, and she was fighting until the end."
Airdate: Tuesday, July 22, 2008
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New York, NY - July 22, 2008 - Carl Gettleman, son of former Golden Girls actress Estelle Getty, speaks with INSIDE EDITION about the passing of his mother.
Getty passed away in her Los Angeles home on July 22nd, 2008. She was 84-years-old.
Gettleman tells INSIDE EDITION that his mother had been suffering from an advanced form of dementia before her death.
Gettleman: "She suffered primarily from dementia - Lewy Body, which is a form of dementia. Somewhat different in diagnosis from Alzheimer's, but pretty same symptoms. In fact, it's sort of a combination of Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. She also had osteoporosis."
Gettleman tells INSIDE EDITION that his mother, who required round-the-clock health care, had a strong will to live.
Gettleman: "She had a very strong will to live, and she was fighting until the end. She kept trying to keep eyes open...Every now and then she'd do a ‘Sophia' thing and throw a punch or something."
Gettleman tells INSIDE EDITION that dementia, which is the progressive decline of brain function, caused his mother to slowly deteriorate.
Gettleman: "Mom had not been ambulatory for a long time. She was wheelchair bound, she had to be fed and everything....She hadn't been lucid for a very long time...She spoke, but she mainly spoke jibberish."
Gettleman tells INSIDE EDITION that his mother was tough and taught him to be strong.
Gettleman: "She was the kind of mom, ‘Get up there, get out and do it.' We had a very warm and loving relationship."
Gettleman, who says they are planning a funeral for Thursday, tells INSIDE EDITION what an extremely emotional time this is for him and his family.
Gettleman: "Mom always worried about this happening and now its happening. For me it's extremely difficult."
INSIDE EDITION is produced daily at the CBS Broadcast Center in New York City and produced and distributed by CBS Television Distribution, a unit of CBS Corp.