Pat Carroll was a constant figure in comedy television for decades. Her daughter, Kerry Karsian, said she died at her home in Cape Cod, Massachusetts.
Her other daughter put out a statement on Instagram saying that they want everyone to “honor her by having a raucous laugh at absolutely anything today (and every day forward) because besides her brilliant talent and love, she leaves my sister Kerry and I with the greatest gift of all, imbuing us with humor and the ability to laugh…even in the saddest of times.”
Carroll was born in Shreveport, Louisiana in 1927. She and her family moved to Los Angeles when she was five years old. She landed her first film role in 1948 in “Hometown Girl” but decided her talents were better served in television. She won an Emmy for her performance in “Cesar’s Hour” in 1956.
Pat was a regular on “Make Room for Daddy” and a guest star on “The DuPont Show with June Allyson.” She appeared on”The Danny Kaye Show” and “The Carol Burnett Show.” She played one of the wicked stepsisters in the 1965 TV production of “Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella.” She also won a Grammy in 1980 for the recording of her one woman show “Gertrude Stein, Gertrude Stein, Gertrude Stein.”
The Little Mermaid
Younger generations know Carroll for her role as the voice actor of Ursula in “The Little Mermaid.” She wasn’t actually the first choice for the role. The directors wanted Joan Collins or Bea Arthur to voice the sea witch, and Elaine Stritch was even cast before Carroll even got to audition. Her rendition of “Poor Unfortunate Souls” would make her one of Disney’s most unforgettable villains. She often said that Ursula was one of her favorite roles. She described Ursula as an “Ex-Shakespearean actress who now sold cars.”