"I'm devastated. She was my hero, such a comic genius."
SANTA ROSA, Calif. (KGO) -- The Bay Area is reacting to the passing of Betty White. From animal advocates who knew her to stage performers, everyone agrees Betty White was the real deal.
"I'm devastated. She was my hero, such a comic genius," said D'arcy Drollinger.
White really was a hero to D'arcy Drollinger, he's channeled her for the past seven years portraying Rose Nylund in the annual Golden Girls Live drag show in San Francisco.
Drollinger said White made it look easy and believable no matter who she was playing.
"I think Betty White is amazing. She could could play any character from b**** to s*** to airhead."
The beloved trailblazing actress loved her craft but loved animals even more.
Marin Humane CEO Nancy Mckenney first met Betty White in the 1990s at a fundraiser for Seattle's Humane Society.
"We had this fundraiser, she was so generous with her time everyone in awe she was in our midst," said McKenney.
The founders of Santa Rosa's Safari West animal habitat say White was the real deal.
"There are a lot of activists, but she was an advocate. She stayed the course she did lots of good for many years for all sorts of animals," said Safari West co-founder Peter Lang.
The Monterey Bay Aquarium tweeted; "Thank you Betty for your boundless passion for wildlife and your support of our mission of ocean conservation."
To Betty, we say thank you for the laughs and for a life well lived.
"We lost a true original and all I could say it should inspire us to be a little like Betty White," said Drollinger.