What’s Eating Gilbert Grape Dies: Cates, Darlene–DiCaprio’s Screen Mother Dies at 69

Darlene Cates, who played DiCaprio’s mother in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, has died. She was 69.

Cates’ daughter, Sheri Cates Morgan, announced in a Facebook post that her mother died “peacefully in her sleep” on Sunday morning.

“We take comfort in knowing that she is no longer in pain and is in the arms of our Heavenly Father, breaking away only to dance with our Savior, Jesus,” the daughter wrote.

“Gilbert Grape” star Leonardo DiCaprio honored his on-screen mother in a Facebook post on Tuesday afternoon.

“Darlene was the best acting mom I ever had the privilege of working alongside,” DiCaprio wrote. “Her endearing personality and incredible talent will live on in the memories of those who knew her, and those who loved her work. My thoughts and prayers are with her family during this difficult time.”