Actress Eileen Brennan is best known for her role as the tough army officer Captain Doreen Lewis in the 1980 comedy hit, PRIVATE BENJAMIN, in which a young Jewish woman(Goldie Hawn) joins the army after her new husband dies on their wedding night during sex. And Brennan later reprised that role for the TV version of PRIVATE BENJAMIN as well. But, a growing career as a popular actress was cut short for Brennan after she was having dinner with Goldie Hawn who had become her best friend and Brennan was struck by a car and nearly killed. The actress had both legs shattered as well as severe bone breakage to the left side of her face. For a long time that accident filled her with both a rage and determination to get well, as the recovery process took three long years. But, the actress became addicted to her painkiller medications and had later problems dealing with that as well as a later bout with breast cancer. But, Brennan did recover and resumed her acting career, managing a pretty nice resume of credits to her name.
As late as 2001, the actress began to play some quirky but well loved roles such as the crazy cat lady in JEEPERS CREEPERS and in the period of 2001 to 2006 was nominated for an Emmy for her role as a supporting character actor on TV’s WILL & GRACE. But, in her earlier days she managed some other acclaimed roles such as her nomination for her supporting role in THE LAST PICTURE SHOW from 1971. Few people remember it, but in 1968, Eileen Brennan was a featured player on ROWAN & MARTIN”S LAUGH-IN. Brennan had a very resume of both TV and film critics and was a popular and durable comic actress. Her last film role was in 2009 in the dramedy, THE KINGS OF APPLETON.
Not everyone remembers how many TV shows and movies that Brennan was a part of, but she was a long running talent that made a lot of people laugh with her often comic roles that she could play and her varied style of acting. She will be greatly missed. The actress passed away from cancer.