Hollywood legend Elizabeth Taylor dies at 79

Elizabeth Taylor died at the age of 79 following a heart failure. She began her second month of treatment for a heart problem at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

“Legendary actress, businesswoman, and fearless activist Elizabeth Taylor died peacefully today in Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. She was surrounded by her children – Michael Wilding, Christopher Wilding, Liza Todd and Maria Burton,” Taylor’s publicist, Sally Morrison, said in a statement.

Her son, Michael Wilding, said:

“My Mother was an extraordinary woman who lived life to the fullest, with great passion, humor, and love. Though her loss is devastating to those of us who held her so close and so dear, we will always be inspired by her enduring contribution to our world. Her remarkable body of work in film, her ongoing success as a businesswoman, and her brave and relentless advocacy in the fight against HIV/AIDS, all make us all incredibly proud of what she accomplished. We know, quite simply, that the world is a better place for Mom having lived in it. Her legacy will never fade, her spirit will always be with us, and her love will live forever in our hearts.”

Morrison also said that a private family funeral will be held later this week. In lieu of flowers, the family asked that contributions be made to the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (elizabethtayloraidsfoundation.org). People wanting to send personal messages can log on to Taylor’s official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Elizabeth-Taylor-Tribute).

Taylor was hospitalized at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles six weeks ago for symptoms caused by congestive heart failure. Although she suffered complications, her health was stabilized and it was hoped that she would be released soon.

Elizabeth Taylor went through many medical battles for many years and in October 2009 she underwent heart surgery. The actress was diagnosed with congestive heart failure about six years ago.

R.I.P. Elizabeth Taylor