L.A. Times Obituary, no Author Credited, 9/4/94


Barbara Hammer Avedon, who co-created the popular television police partnership of two women, Chris Cagney and Mary Beth Lacey--cracking the stereotype that a series had to have male heroes to be successful--has died at the age of 64.

A family spokesman said she died of cancer Wednesday (8/31/94) in Palm Springs.

Ms. Avedon also was a founder of Another Mother for Peace, organized in Beverly Hills during the stormy days of the Vietnam War protest movement. The longtime screenwriter and political activist was among the first to find a voice for her feminist views on TV.

The motto of Another Mother for Peace, "War Is Not Healthy for Children and Other Living Things," became a byword for war protesters.

With Barney Rosenzweig and Barbara Corday, Ms. Avedon crated single, ambitious Chris Cagney and played her off Mary Beth Lacey, a dedicated police officer, wife and mother. "Cagney & Lacey" was set in the grand tradition of "Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid" and other male-dominated action epics, and until "Thelma & Louise" came along it was considered a singularly successful sample of women as both caring and cantankerous friends.

The series ran from 1982 until 1988, with Tyne Daly and Sharon Gless in the lead roles.

Ms. Avedon also helped write two Cagney and Lacey movies of the week: "Cagney and Lacey Together Again" and "The Return." Another of her television movies was "This Girl's For Hire" in 1983.

She began as an episodic writer for "The Donna Reed Show," "Father' Knows Best" and "Bewitched."

Survivors include a son, Joshua Avedon, and brother, Bruce Hammer.

***This article was sent to me by Scott. Thanks, Scott!

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