Family and colleagues are mourning Denise Dowse Sunday after the actress, who portrayed vice principal Yvonne Teasley on the 1990s TV show “Beverly Hills, 90210,” died at the age of 64.
“It is with a very heavy heart that I inform everyone that my sister, Denise Dowse, has gone forward to meet our family in eternal life,” Dowse’s sister, Tracey Dowse, wrote Saturday on Instagram. “Denise Yvonne Dowse was the most amazing sister, a consummate, illustrious actress, mentor and director. She was my very best friend and final family member.”
Tracey Dowse revealed earlier this month that her sister was hospitalized with meningitis and was in a coma. Further details about her death were not immediately available.
“This is insanely heartbreaking. Throughout all my years working on Beverly Hills, 90210, my scenes with Denise will always be remembered with the utmost respect for her talent, and fondness for the loving soul she was,” actor Ian Ziering — who played Steve Sanders on the popular Fox show — posted on Instagram.
“Some of my heartiest off camera laughs were between she and I hammering out the discipline her Mrs. Teasley would dish out to my Steve Sanders. My sincere condolences to her family, and all others who she was dear to. God bless you Denise, pay forward that Legacy Key.”
Although known for her work on “Beverly Hills, 90210,” Dowse was a prolific actress whose roles also included Ray Charles’ manager in the 2004 film “Ray,” a character based on a real-life principal in 2005’s “Coach Carter,” therapist Rhonda Pine on HBO’s “Insecure,” and multiple appearances on CBS’ “The Guardian” and “Criminal Minds.”
Other TV credits include “Grey’s Anatomy,” “The X-Files,” “Bones,” “House,” “Monk,” “Law & Order,” “Gilmore Girls,” “Charmed,” “The Bernie Mac Show,” “Nip/Tuck,” “Moesha,” “ER,” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Seinfeld” and “Full House.”
She also had numerous directing credits on stage and directed “Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story,” which opened the Pan African Film & Arts Festival in Los Angeles in April.