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June 14, 2024

Last Surviving ‘Honeymooners’ Main Cast Member Joyce Randolph Dies at 99

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Jan 15, 2024

Joyce Randolph, best known for playing Trixie Norton on the iconic 1950s sitcom “The Honeymooners,” has died at the age of 99, according to multiple news outlets. She was the last surviving main cast member from the show’s original run.

Randolph’s Role as Trixie Brought Joy to Audiences

As Trixie Norton, the patient and caring wife of Ed Norton (played by Art Carney), Randolph exasperatedly but lovingly dealt with her husband’s antics alongside leads Jackie Gleason and Audrey Meadows. With her expressive mannerisms and humorously exasperated reactions to Norton’s schemes, Randolph left an indelible mark on one of the most beloved sitcoms of the Golden Age of Television.

Randolph appeared in all 39 episodes of “The Honeymooners” that aired on CBS from 1955-1956 alongside Gleason, Meadows and Carney. She reprised her role as Trixie Norton periodically until 1978 for many “Honeymooners” reunion specials and sketches on variety series hosted by Gleason.

Table 1. Main Cast Members of “The Honeymooners”

Actor Role Years Active Year of Death
Jackie Gleason Ralph Kramden 1952–1978 1987
Art Carney Ed Norton 1952–1978 2003
Audrey Meadows Alice Kramden 1952–1978 1996
Joyce Randolph Trixie Norton 1952–1978 2024

Co-Stars and Fans Pay Tribute to a TV Icon

Tributes to Randolph and her beloved character flooded social media as the news broke Sunday night.

Her “Honeymooners” co-star Art Carney’s daughter tweeted:

My late father adored Joyce Randolph. Although their paths crossed less over the years, he would be deeply saddened by this news. The chemistry they all had truly made TV magic. Trixie COMPLETED the Norton household with so much heart. 💛 #RIPJoyceRandolph

Comedian Larry Wilmore remarked:

We lost Joyce Randolph, the last surviving member of the Honeymooners cast. If the iconic foursome taught us anything, it’s the immense talent & discipline it takes to perform comedy rooted in truthful character relationships week after week. #RIP

Others simply shared their appreciation for Randolph’s humor and kindness:

So sad to hear of Joyce Randolph’s passing. Every time she was interviewed she just seemed like the sweetest lady. My grandma introduced me to The Honeymooners at a young age and I’ve loved it since. Trixie was perfection. 🤍

Randolph Had Long Career Before and After ‘Honeymooners’ Fame

Joyce Randolph was born in Detroit in 1925 and had a lengthy career before and after “The Honeymooners” brought her widespread fame.

She got her start on radio before transitioning to television in the late 1940s. Early TV credits included appearances on variety shows like “The Colgate Comedy Hour” and several episodes of “The Jimmy Durante Show” in the early 1950s.

It was working with Art Carney in a 1951 TV production of the play “The Man Who Came to Dinner” that first introduced Randolph to Jackie Gleason and caught the attention of his producers. When Gleason launched sketches featuring The Honeymooners couple and their neighbors the Nortons on his variety program Cavalcade of Stars in 1952, Randolph was tapped to play Trixie opposite Carney’s Ed Norton.

After 39 classic episodes of “The Honeymooners” aired in 1955-56, Randolph continued working in television through the 1970s, reprising her role as Trixie in periodic Honeymooners revivals on Gleason’s variety series and making guest appearances on shows like “Love, American Style” and “Fantasy Island.”

Outside of acting, Randolph wrote two books: “My Life with The Honeymooners” in 1985 and “Trixie & Me” in 2021, showing she retained her wit and charm into her later years.

Randolph Was Last Surviving Member of Iconic Cast

The celebrated foursome of Gleason, Carney, Meadows and Randolph created an indelible imprint on American culture as Ralph and Alice Kramden and Ed and Trixie Norton. Sadly, Randolph was the last of the iconic main cast members still with us in their original roles.

Gleason, who starred as hot-tempered bus driver Ralph Kramden, passed away in 1987 at age 71. Audrey Meadows, who played his quick-witted wife Alice, died in 1996 at age 73. Art Carney, Joyce Randolph’s on-screen husband Ed Norton, died in 2003 at age 85.

Randolph’s death marks the end of an era and closes the curtain on one of the most legendary casts in television history. Yet thanks to the magic of syndication, The Honeymooners lives on through reruns, ensuring Randolph, Gleason, Carney and Meadows will be long remembered for their comic brilliance together.

What Randolph’s Passing Means for Her ‘Honeymooners’ Legacy

The outpouring of nostalgia, grief and fond tributes for Joyce Randolph shows just how much The Honeymooners, over 60 years since it left the air, still holds a special place in television history.

Randolph was the last living link to the iconic series. With her passing, there is added poignancy to each rerun knowing all four stellar performers who brought Ralph and Alice Kramden and Ed and Trixie Norton so vividly to life are now gone.

If any show seems ripe for a remake, The Honeymooners always comes to mind. However, recasting such legendary roles presents a formidable challenge. Joyce Randolph and her peers left awfully big shoes to fill. Perhaps the best tribute is to let this peerless foursome’s inimitable magic speak for itself in the original 39 classic episodes.

Generations of new fans continue to discover The Honeymooners precisely because of Randolph, Gleason, Carney and Meadows’ lightning-in-a-bottle alchemy that transcends the ages. Now their fame is eternally preserved, the four stars forever linked for gifting television one of its most human and hilarious hits.

So here’s to Joyce Randolph, the last leading lady left from one of TV’s funniest families. May Trixie Norton’s memory, and all the laughter she sparked, live on and on.

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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