Maureen Arthur, 'How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying’ actress, dead at 88

Arthur’s friend, the actor Ilene Graff, announced the news on Facebook. “The world is a little less sparkly without her,” wrote Graff, “but I am so glad I got to be her friend. Her memory will definitely be a blessing.”

Maureen Arthur appearing in the ABC tv movie 'Like Normal People', circa 1979.

Maureen Arthur appearing in the ABC tv movie ‘Like Normal People’, circa 1979. (Photo by Gemma LeMana /American Broadcasting Companies via Getty Images)

Although her signature role arrived in the early ’60s with her scene-stealing performance on Broadway in “How To Succeed…,” she quickly became a familiar presence on television. “Bachelor Father,” “Perry Mason” and “I Spy” were a few of her early credits before Arthur moved more consistently to comedy: By the mid-1960s, she was guesting on “Get Smart,” “Please Don’t Eat the Daisies,” “The Monkees,” “The Flying Nun,” “Gomer Pyle: USMC,” “Love, American Style,” “Sanford and Son” and one of the lighter segments of the horror anthology “Night Gallery.”

From left: Michele Lee, Robert Morse, and Maureen Arthur, of ‘How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying’, circa 1967.

From left: Michele Lee, Robert Morse, and Maureen Arthur, of ‘How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying’, circa 1967. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)

“The New Dick Van Dyke Show,” “Laverne & Shirley,” “Mork & Mindy,” “CPO Sharkey,” “Too Close For Comfort,” “Highway to Heaven” and “Matlock” were among her later TV credits. She was a regular on the 1984 family business drama “Empire.”

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In film, she played opposite Don Knotts in 1969’s “The Love God?” and Bob Hope that same year in “How to Commit Marriage.” In 1971, she appeared opposite John Phillip Law in “The Love Machine,” based on the novel by Jacqueline Susann.

Maureen Arthur made her mark as an actress in the '60s.

Maureen Arthur made her mark as an actress in the ’60s. (Photo by FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images)

Arthur’s first marriage, to musician George William Weidler, ended in divorce, and she subsequently married “The Andy Griffith Show” producer Aaron Ruben in 1970. They were married until his death in 2010.

In addition to her acting career, Arthur devoted much of her energy to Variety – the Children’s Charity of Southern California. Remember Graff, “A tireless advocate for children in need, especially those with physical, emotional and/or intellectual challenges, she helped raise countless millions of dollars for them.”

Arthur is survived by brothers Gerald and David, and extended family.

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