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Edna Krabappel voice actor Marcia Wallace dies at 70

The actor who provided the voice for The Simpsons' Edna Krabappel for over 20 years, Marcia Wallace, has died at 70.

The actor who provided the voice for The Simpsons' Edna Krabappel for over 20 years, Marcia Wallace, has died at 70.

(Credit: 20th Century Fox)

Marcia Wallace, the actor and comedian who voiced Bart's teacher Edna Krabappel on The Simpsons, died on 25 October 2013 at home in Los Angeles — just a week from her 71st birthday — of complications relating to pneumonia, the LA Times has reported.

"I was tremendously saddened to learn this morning of the passing of the brilliant and gracious Marcia Wallace. She was beloved by all at The Simpsons and we intend to retire her irreplaceable character," said The Simpsons executive producer Al Jean in a statement. "Earlier we had discussed a potential storyline in which a character passed away. This was not Marcia's Edna Krabappel. Marcia's passing is unrelated and again, a terrible loss for all who had the pleasure of knowing her."

In 1985, Wallace had been diagnosed with breast cancer, and spent over 20 years battling the disease. In March, she underwent surgery and was cancer-free at the time of her death.

Although Wallace is best-known today for her work on The Simpsons, winning an Emmy for 1992 episode "Bart the Lover", she also played the part of wise-cracking secretary Carol Kester in CBS' The Bob Newhart Show from 1972 to 1978, and appeared as a panellist on CBS game show Match Game in the 70s.

Wallace's coworkers took to Twitter to pay tribute. "So sad to learn — through Twitter, first — of the passing of the wonderful Marcia Wallace. Sorely missed already," wrote Harry Shearer, who voices, among others, Principal Skinner, Mr Burns and Ned Flanders.

"Cheers to the hilarious, kind, fab Marcia Wallace, who has taken her leave of us. Heaven is now a much funnier place b/c of you, Marcia," Yeardley Smith, the voice of Lisa Simpson, said.