‘Hill Street Blues’ Star, Barbara Bosson Passes Away at 83

Barbara Bosson, an Emmy-nominated actor known for her role as Fay Furillo on “Hill Street Blues,” passed away Saturday in Los Angeles. She was 83 years old. Bosson’s death was confirmed by her son, Jesse Bochco.

She is best known as starring as Fay Furillo during the first six seasons of NBC’s Hill Street Blues, which was created by her then-husband, Steven Bochco. Bosson was also Emmy nominated for her role as prosecutor Miriam Grasso on ABC’s Murder One.

From 1981 to 1986, Bosson was a main cast member on “Hill Street Blues,” portraying Fay Furillo, the ex-wife to police captain Frank Furillo (Daniel J. Travanti). She received five Emmy nominations for best supporting actress in a drama series throughout her tenure on the series. She was nominated in the same category in 1995 for “Murder One,” which shows the life of prominent attorney Theodore Hoffman at a Los Angeles firm, in which Bosson played Miriam Grasso.

Bosson’s other acting credits include “Richie Brockelman: The Missing 24 Hours,” “Richie Brockelman, Private Eye,” “Hooperman,” “Cop Rock” and “The Last Starfighter,” in addition to guest appearances in “Mannix,” “Crazy Like a Fox,” “L.A. Law,” “Civil Wars” and “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.” She has also written works such as “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” “A Session With the Committee” and “Scattering Dad.”

“More spirit and zest than you could shake a stick at. When she loved you, you felt it without a doubt. If she didn’t, you may well have also known that too. Forever in our hearts. I love you Mama,” wrote Jesse Bochco.

Bosson was born on Nov. 1, 1939, in Charleroi, Pennsylvania, and raised in the nearby coal-mining town of Belle Vernon. She and her family moved to Florida, and she graduated from Boca Ciega High School in Gulfport in 1957.

Bosson was accepted into the drama department at Carnegie-Mellon but couldn’t come up with the tuition, so she moved to New York and worked as a secretary for the American Conservatory Theater and as a Playboy bunny while taking acting classes with Herbert Berghof and Milton Katselas.

Bosson is survived by her son, daughter, granddaughter and grandson.

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