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Greek-American TV Legend Betty White Celebrating 99th Birthday

LOS ANGELES – Greek-American TV legend Betty White turns 99 on January 17 and shared how she is spending her birthday during the quarantine.

White told Entertainment Tonight (ET) on January 12, "You probably didn't ask, but I’ll tell you anyway… What am I doing for my birthday? Running a mile each morning has been curtailed by COVID, so I am working on getting The Pet Set re-released, and feeding the two ducks who come to visit me every day.”

The Pet Set is “White's syndicated show from the 1970s, which tapped into her lifelong love of animals, spotlighting celebrities like Carol Burnett, Mary Tyler Moore, Doris Day, James Stewart, Burt Reynolds and more – as well as their furry friends: ‘dogs, cats, birds and horses – in addition to a wide range of wild animals including tigers, bears, elephants, lions, wolves, gorillas, cougars, seals, kangaroos, zebras and eagles – both in the studio and on location,’” ET reported.

Produced by White's late husband, Allen Ludden, The Pet Set will be available on DVD and streaming platforms by MPI Media Group on February 23, to “commemorate the show's 50th anniversary,” ET reported.

"The Pet Set is one of my favorite shows," White said in a news release, "I’m thrilled it’s going to be seen again after all these years,” ET reported.

The beloved actress told People magazine the key to longevity includes “having a sense of humor,” and "Don't take yourself too seriously. You can lie to others — not that I would — but you cannot lie to yourself."

White continued, “Just looking at the positive side and not dwelling on the downside. Takes up too much energy being negative. Also having a good agent who keeps me busy all the time,” People reported.

The only child of Christine Tess Cachikis and Horace Logan White, she was born in Oak Park, IL. The family moved to California during the Great Depression and it was while attending high school that Betty decided to become an actress.

A pioneer in the television industry, White worked in front of and behind the cameras as the first woman to produce her own TV sitcom. She won seven Emmy Awards during her long TV career most memorably for her work on The Mary Tyler Moore Show as Sue Ann Nevins and for The Golden Girls as Rose Nylund.

Among her other honors are three Screen Actors Guild awards, three American Comedy awards, a Grammy, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. White was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1995. As of 2013, she also holds the Guinness World Records for the longest television career for a female entertainer. White is also a longtime animal rights activist.

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