Betty Ann Bruno, the talented actress best known for her role as a Munchkin in the iconic film ‘The Wizard of Oz,’ has passed away at the age of 91. The Emmy-winning TV reporter and native Hawaiian entertained and informed audiences for decades, leaving behind a legacy that touched the hearts of many.
Betty Ann Bruno Cause of Death
On a fateful Sunday, while dancing at the Sonoma Women’s Club, Betty Ann Bruno experienced a sudden, splitting headache.
The tweet below verifies the news of Betty’s death:
‘The Wizard of Oz’ actress Betty Ann Bruno dead at 91 https://t.co/l5Zw2VbuHe
— Fox News (@FoxNews) August 2, 2023
Her husband, Craig Scheiner, immediately rushed her to the hospital, but tragically, she suffered a heart attack and collapsed before reaching the front desk. Her husband confirmed that Betty had no major health issues but attributed her passing to natural causes as her heart simply wore out.
The Last Surviving Munchkin
Betty Ann Bruno, born Betty Ann Ka’ihilani, was among the last surviving actors from the 1939 classic ‘The Wizard of Oz.’ Her role as a Munchkin captured the hearts of generations of fans worldwide, and she was recently honored at the Oz Stravaganza in Chittenango, New York, the longest-running celebration of the beloved film.
A Stellar Career in Journalism
Following her memorable stint as a Munchkin, Betty Ann Bruno transitioned into journalism and became an Emmy-winning TV reporter for KTVU in the Bay Area. Over two decades with the station, she won three Emmy Awards for her outstanding work, covering breaking news, news-feature series, and investigative series. Bruno’s reporting was highly regarded, and she was known for her ability to secure interviews that others couldn’t.
A Life of Inspiration and Dedication
Betty Ann Bruno’s life was marked by dedication and a thirst for inspiring others. After retiring from journalism in 1992, she moved to Sonoma, California, where she founded Hula Mai, a dance troupe that taught locals the art of hula dancing and fostered a deep appreciation for Hawaiian culture. Betty’s passion for hula dancing and her role as the “hula lady” in her community brought joy to many.
Remembering Betty Ann Bruno
Betty Ann Bruno’s passing leaves a void in the hearts of her loved ones and the entertainment industry. As the last surviving Munchkin, she held a special place in film history, and her contributions to journalism and her community will be cherished forever. The legacy of this remarkable woman will continue to inspire generations to come.
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A Memorial Service
Hula Mai, the dance troupe founded by Betty Ann Bruno, will perform at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds at Shade Park Stage 2 on Saturday in tribute to her. The details of a memorial service to honor Betty’s life and accomplishments will be announced soon.
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