Isabel Sanford

sanford1August 29, 1917 – July 9, 2004

Eloise Gwendolyn Sanford wanted to be an actress. Her mother forbade it. But, that didn’t stop her. Sanford, now going by “Isabel,” pursued acting anyway and eventually found herself in Hollywood. After landing a supporting role in Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner? opposite Tracy and Hepburn, she was cast in the role that would change her life and define her career. For fourteen years (and a few more times after the fact – ’cause…money) Isabel played Louise “Weezy” Jefferson alongside Sherman Hemsley’s George in Norman Lear’s immensely popular TV show All in the Family and the eventual, eponymous spin-off, The Jeffersons. Her work on The Jeffersons earned her 5 Golden Globe nominations and an Emmy win for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, a first for any African American actress. Her post-Jeffersons career saw her (and sometimes Sherman, as well) guest starring on a number of television shows. Sanford died of “natural causes” following a year or so of deteriorating health stemming from surgery on her neck. I will not make a joke about her “moving on up to a deluxe apartment in the sky.” That’s just too easy.

Burial

Forest Lawn Memorial Park – Hollywood Hills, CA

Specific Location

Courts of Remembrance; On the northern interior wall of the northeastern-most section, there are two “squares” of darker marble crypts, Isabel’s crypt is in the left “square” in the bottom-left corner (2nd row up). One space to the right and one row below Morey Amsterdam.

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