Rae left after its seventh year, however, explaining later, "I needed some time for the rest of my life".
Rae departed The Facts of Life after Season 7, at which point Cloris Leachman stepped in as Mrs. Garrett's sister, Beverly Ann, for the last two seasons. Rae's death comes a year after the actress was diagnosed with bone cancer.
She played Edna Garrett in "Diff'rent Strokes" and then on the beloved spinoff "The Facts of Life".
She passed away peacefully at her home in Los Angeles on Sunday afternoon, Strauss said, and was surrounded by her family at the time of her death.
"The Facts of Life" debuted in 1979 and centered around Mrs. Garrett's relationship with a group of girls she met in the season 1 finale of "Diff'rent Strokes".
Rae won an Emmy nomination for her performance in the 1975 TV drama "Queen of the Stardust Ballroom", according to IMDb.
"Sorry, no words at the moment just love and tears. and yeah, smiles", tweeted Fields, who played Tootie.
Comedians Kathy Griffin and Gilbert Gottfried, as well as Broadway star Audra McDonald, also paid their respects via social media. They were very attached to Mrs. Garrett. She will be so missed.
Grammy Award winning comedian Kathy Griffin simply said: "Rest in peace Charlotte Rae".
Todd Bridges, who was on "Diff'rent Strokes", said on Twitter that she was beloved by all her colleagues and that the show "would not have been the same without you". And they all wanted a hug from me! "I don't want her to be Polly Perfect, because she must have human failings and make mistakes".
Charlotte was a part of the Northwestern University's renaissance of theater and music and comedy along with many great creators and performers of her generation; she spent many insane days-and nights-in Evanston and NY cavorting with roommate, Cloris Leachman, comedy partner, Paul Lynde, and other rising stars of the late 40's and early 50's. She was Tony-nominated in 1966 for her work in the musical "Pickwick" and in 1969 for the play "Morning, Noon, and Night".
According to Entertainment Tonight, Rae is survived by her sister, Miriam Guten, and her son, Larry.
Rae gained fame on TV but she made her name as a thespian in the 1950s in such stage in roles ranging from "The Threepenny Opera" to "Li'l Abner".