By Jennifer Lee, EnStarz | Jul 27, 2012 07:06 PM EDT
Lupe Ontiveros has died of liver cancer aged 69, Thursday night. The much heralded actress was the star of a number of hit movies including "Selena" and "As Good as It Gets," and received an Emmy nomination for her role as a busy-body mother-in-law on "Desperate Housewives." The announcement of her death was made by her publicists on Friday.
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Ontiveros had been sick for some time and prior to her death she had received well wishes from a host of Hollywood and political figures including Edward James Olmos and Hilda Solis, it has been reported.
The actress had been diagnosed with liver cancer just in January, but she did not immediately tell her friends and family.
According to TMZ, Ontiveros' friend and co-star from hit film "Selena," Jacob Vargas, was at her bedside when she died. Vargas has confirmed that when she passed away "she was surrounded by many friends and family."
In giving a touching testimony to the actress, Vargas described Ontiveros as an "amazing person. A force of nature. Always smiling and ready to pull you out on the dance floor. She will be dearly missed."
The Mexican-American actress was featured more often than not as domestic worker. She featured as a maid in "The Goonies" as well as sitcom "Reba." However, her most memorable role for many will be that of Yolanda Saldivar in "Selena." Her part was that of the president of Selena's fan club who was completely obsessed with the singing sensation. More recently she was featured in the hit ABC series "Desperate Housewives" playing the mother in law of Eva Longoria's character.
In a 2009 interview with NPR she confirmed that she had appeared as a maid in more than 150 different roles. She was one of the most recognizable Latina actresses in Hollywood.
She is survived by her husband, Elias Ontiveros, and their three sons.
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