Betty White died of natural causes, her agent Jeff Witjas confirmed on Monday.
“Betty died peacefully in her sleep at her home,” Witjas said in a statement to People magazine. “People are saying her death was related to getting a booster shot three days earlier but that is not true. She died of natural causes. Her death should not be politicized — that is not the life she lived.” Witjas didn’t immediately respond to Rolling Stone’s request for comment.
Witjas’ statement comes amid false reports and speculation from social media users that White had gotten a Covid-19 booster shot, leading to her death three days later. The Associated Press debunked the claim, based on a fabricated quote from White. Witjas also told the AP White didn’t get a booster on the 28th.
White died last Friday, on New Year’s Eve, at age 99, just a few weeks shy of her 100th birthday, with much of the entertainment world mourning her death. “The world looks different now,” Ryan Reynolds, who co-starred in the 2009 romantic comedy The Proposal alongside White, wrote on Twitter. “She was great at defying expectation. She managed to grow very old and somehow, not old enough. We’ll miss you, Betty. Now you know the secret.”
White was one of the most beloved mainstays in film and television, working steadily on the screen for over 60 years. “To call White a fundamental part of the very fabric of American television would almost undersell how ubiquitous and likable she was,” Rolling Stone’s TV critic Alan Sepinwall wrote following White’s death. “She was everywhere throughout TV history, doing a little bit of everything.”
While White died before her 100th birthday, movie theaters across the country will still air Betty White: A Celebration (originally titled Betty White: 100 Years Young) on what would’ve been her hundredth birthday, Jan. 17.