Dear Abby columnist Pauline Phillips dies
Beloved advice guru Dear Abby has died at the age of 94.
Pauline Phillips, better known as Abigail Van Buren, dispensed advice to thousands through her "Dear Abby" column. Phillips died Wednesday after struggling with Alzheimer’s disease.
The popular column gave readers advice on everything from weddings and in-laws to proper restaurant etiquette.
By the time her family revealed she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2002, her daughter, Jeanne Phillips, who had helped her mother with the "Dear Abby" column for years, was its sole author.
TMZ said Jeanne Phillips plans to continue her mother's legacy. "I have lost my mother, my mentor and my best friend," she said. "My mother leaves very big high heels to fill with a legacy of compassion, commitment and positive social change."
"Dear Abby" was not afraid to address Alzheimer's disease in columns. In a Dec. 7, 2012, letter, a reader wrote to Abby, "My 62-year-old husband was recently diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, and I have since learned that his co-workers spotted his troubles long before I did at home. … Friends, when you notice someone is declining, please speak up."
Abby wrote back, "Although there have been warnings that it was coming for years, the Alzheimer's epidemic is here now, and millions more families will be touched by this progressive – and ultimately fatal – disease."