Birth Date: December 20, 1922
Birth Place: Newark, New Jersey, USA
Date of Death: February 28, 1985 / Age: 62
Location of Death: New York, New York, USA
Cause of Death: diabetes
Biography: Charita Bauer (December 20, 1922 — February 28, 1985) was an American soap opera actress. She played headstrong and opinionated Bertha "Bert" Miller Bauer on the long-running soap The Guiding Light on radio from 1950 to 1956 and on TV from 1952 to 1984.
While her character was a spitfire in the earlier days, by the 1970s she had been relegated to the ceremonial role of town matriarch. To avoid confusion between her real life and her popular soap role, Charita Bauer named her own children Ed and Mike after Bert Bauer's children on The Guiding Light.
Just before Thanksgiving 1983, complications from a blood clot forced her to have her leg amputated. When she returned to the show in March 1984, her character, after visiting Aunt Meta, returned following an amputation. For the first time in decades, Bert had to depend upon others to wait on her hand and foot, resulting in one of the series' most memorable stories. (Bert, sitting in a wheelchair at Cedars Hospital, told Josh Lewis, who had been paralyzed recently and had given up hope, that life itself was a miracle and never to forget it.)
Bauer was no stranger to social issue storylines--in 1962, she became the first actress on daytime television to tackle a real-life medical dilemma, as Bert was diagnosed with uterine cancer. The storyline helped millions of women realize the importance of regular checkups and pap smear screenings. Bauer received a record amount of mail from fans.
Bauer died of complications stemming from diabetes only weeks shy of her 35th anniversary on the show. She received a posthumous Lifetime Contribution Daytime Emmy Award that summer, along with "Search for Tomorrow's" Larry Haines and Mary Stuart (who in the 1990s played Meta Bauer). Her character was killed off the show in March 1986.