Cher had been taking care of her mother in recent years, even quitting a film about the Flint water crisis to stay close to her, but at 96 years old, Georgia Holt finally passed this Saturday, December 10th. Following a bout with pneumonia and other recurring ailments, Holt was announced to have passed away by her daughter Cher who simply tweeted, “Mom is gone,” accompanied by a sad face. With responses like Perez Hilton saying, “My deepest condolences. The biggest hug to you and your family! Your mother was a gem!” and actress Mary Helgenberger saying, “What a blessing to have had her in your life for as long as you did,” it’s clear that if Cher loves you, her millions of fans do as well. And more importantly, they understood how important her mother was to her.
Six marriages and working as an actress, singer, songwriter and producer, Holt lived a full life and her theatrical bug clearly made its way down to Cher. Cher has said that she can’t remember a time when she wasn’t singing and said she sang from about the moment she recalls speaking. Being raised by her Holt, she said never involved her giving any advice. She simply was told along with her sister what worked for her. Starring in I Love Lucy as a model and working as an actress, singer and songwriter, her daughter Cher clearly got her theatrical gene. She wasn’t always able to make it in the industry and almost had an abortion based on her mother’s advice. She even briefly put Cher into an orphanage where the nuns advised she put her up for adoption.
I heard the abortion story when I was a teenager,” Cher has said. “The orphanage story has been a touchy one for my mom her whole life, and she didn’t want to talk about it. I said, ‘Mom, why didn’t you just march in and take me?’ She said, ‘I didn’t have the power. I didn’t have any money or a job, and the church was so strong. I’d go see you every day and you’d be crying. You don’t know what it was like.’ It was harder for women then.”
Close to a decade ago Cher produced an hour long documentary about her mother titled Dear Mom, Love Cher that started as a 16 minute video and a gift before turning into a Lifetime Mother’s Day special. Speaking about the film at the time, Cher said, “It’s a good Mother’s Day special, but it’s not Hallmark. It’s a Stephen Colbert or South Park version, not your average Mother’s Day story, but totally real.” It began when her mother found tapes of her never before released album she recorded in 1980 with Elvis’ band. Cher had them remastered and added footage of her mother singing and chatting.
It’s clear that Cher loved her mother dearly and will miss her along with her fans that have grown to love her as well. Our condolences go to her and her family.