Gilda Susan Radner (June 28, 1946 – May 20, 1989) was an American comedian and actress who was one of the seven original cast members for the NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live (SNL).
In her routines, Radner specialized in parodies of television stereotypes, such as advice specialists and news anchors, and in 1977, she won an Emmy Award for her performances on the show. She also portrayed those characters in her highly successful one-woman show on Broadway in 1979.
Radner’s SNL work established her as an iconic figure in the history of American comedy. She died from ovarian cancer in 1989. Her autobiography dealt frankly with her life, work, and personal struggles, including those with the illness. Her widower, Gene Wilder, carried out her personal wish that information about her illness would help other cancer victims, founding and inspiring organizations that emphasize early diagnosis, hereditary factors and support for cancer victims.
She was posthumously awarded a Grammy Award in 1990. Radner was inducted into the Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame in 1992; and she posthumously received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2003.