'Simpsons' showrunner Al Jean to retire Marcia Wallace's character, Edna Krabappel

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Out of respect for Marcia Wallace, who passed away at the age of 70 on Friday (Oct. 25), "The Simpsons" showrunner plans to retire her iconic character of Edna Krabappel.

"I was tremendously saddened to learn this morning of the passing of the brilliant and gracious Marcia Wallace," producer Al Jean says in a statement. "She was beloved by all at 'The Simpsons' and we intend to retire her irreplaceable character."

On "The Simpsons," Wallace voiced 4th-grade teacher Edna Krabappel, and before that, she was beloved as Carol Kester, the lovelorn, wisecracking secretary on "The Bob Newhart Show." A breast cancer survivor for 28 years, Wallace died with her family by her side after battling a lengthy illness, her caretaker tells TMZ.

While there is an upcoming onscreen death of one veteran "Simpsons" character, the mysterious identity of that character remains a secret as Jean reveals Edna was never intended to be the one eliminated. "Earlier we had discussed a potential storyline in which a character passed away," Jean says. "This was not Marcia's Edna Krabappel. Marcia's passing is unrelated and again, a terrible loss for all who had the pleasure of knowing her."

Photo/Video credit: FOX