Betty White died less than three weeks before her 100th birthday as a result of “natural causes,” her agent said Monday.
White’s agent and close friend Jeff Witjas previously confirmed to the Associated Press that White did not receive a booster shot on Dec. 28. Social media users falsely claimed White said, “Eat healthy and get all your vaccines. I just got boosted today.”
In a statement on Monday, Witjas said, “Betty died peacefully in her sleep at her home. People are saying her death was related to getting a booster shot three days earlier but that is not true. She died of natural causes. Her death should not be politicized — that is not the life she lived.”
Addressing the false quote, Witjas added, “She never said that regarding the booster. Betty died of natural causes. She did not have the booster three days before she died.”
Witjas told PEOPLE in a statement last Friday that the beloved actress “died peacefully in her sleep at her home” that morning.
“Even though Betty was about to be 100, I thought she would live forever,” Witjas said. “I will miss her terribly and so will the animal world that she loved so much. I don’t think Betty ever feared passing because she always wanted to be with her most beloved husband Allen Ludden. She believed she would be with him again.”
White, who was preparing to celebrate her 100th birthday on Jan. 17, recently opened up to PEOPLE about her feelings about the milestone occasion.
“I’m so lucky to be in such good health and feel so good at this age,” she said at the time. “It’s amazing.”
In 2012, White said she had “no fear or dread of death” in a TimesTalks conversation with New York Times columnist Frank Bruni. She credited her mother’s approach for impacting her view of the subject, adding that she was “happy as a lark to stay around as long as I can.”
“My mother had a wonderful approach to death,” White told Bruni. “She always thought of it as — she said, ‘We know we have managed to find out almost anything that exists, but nobody knows … what happens at that moment when it’s over.’ ”
“And she said, ‘It’s the one secret that we don’t know.’ So whenever we would lose somebody very close and very dear, she would always say, ‘Well, now he knows the secret.’ And it took the curse off of it somehow.”
On Friday, Witjas told PEOPLE that she knew of the love fans had for her during her finals days, adding that he would remind her of it “often.”
“Betty lived a great life and she lived a life that she chose,” he said. “She was happy. Every time I told her, ‘Betty, you’re loved,’ she would look at me with a wry smile and say, ‘Really?’ I hope she knew. I think she did. It was something beyond love.”