Hugh Hefner mourns loss of longtime secretary, Mary
January 29th, 2013
11:10 AM ET

Hugh Hefner mourns loss of longtime secretary, Mary

Playboy founder Hugh Hefner suffered a heartbreaking loss on Sunday. The 86-year-old newlywed confirmed on his Twitter account that his longtime secretary, Mary O'Connor, has died.

"Mary passed away today," Hefner tweeted Sunday evening. "We loved her more than words can say."

According to a Facebook page Hefner shared, O'Connor died Sunday afternoon after "a short illness," with her brother and close friends at her side. She was 84.

Fans of Hefner's E! reality show "Girls Next Door" probably recall O'Connor, who served as Hefner's "loyal and trusted personal secretary, social secretary, confidant, executive assistant, housemother, office-wife and close friend," the Facebook page says. Hef ran the company from her office for the past 40 years and noted of his dear friend, "she gives great phone."

O'Connor is survived by her brother, her sister-in-law, numerous nieces and nephews and many friends. Information on a memorial service is to come.

In the meantime, Hefner's new wife, Crystal, has been honoring O'Connor's memory with a night out.

"Having dinner with all of Mary's close friends at her favorite British pub tonight in her memory," Crystal posted Monday. "Just got news that Mary was was the most googled person today. Proof of how much people care. Love you Mary!"

Filed under: Celebrities • television

soundoff (136 Responses)
  1. s

    Hef ran the company from her office for the past 40 years and noted of his dear friend, "she gives great phone."

    the last things in quoatiations sound really dirty.

    February 22, 2013 at 3:42 am | Report abuse |
    • bonnee sue

      hue, God u r someone i have wanted to talk for along time. sooo sorry for your secretary's death. just to let you know i have seviced many bosses as a personal secretary, and asistant. i would be honored to work for you love. see my profile at face book bonnee sue dillin fontana. want to be yours, dear hef, two of my sons are born near your birthday, and i was almost accepted as a bunny in your playboy bunny place. lets be friends call me 310 266 7297cell or home 805 845 1895. visiting malibu march 2, it is my grand sons birthday, maybe we can talk over coffee.

      my heart goes out to you dear one our souls are eternal, be at peace,k and talk to me i will pray with bonnee sue dillin fontana

      February 23, 2013 at 3:44 am | Report abuse |
  2. No reason for this too be happening...

    i love destiny's child can't wait for the tour..i'm going to play all the video's over and over again.

    February 6, 2013 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  3. bhockey47

    Years back when I worked for Playboy I had the opportunity to meet Ms. O'Connor...she was charming, delightful and quite devoted to her position at the company. Mary you will be missed by many...RIP.

    February 6, 2013 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
  4. maria

    Who cares........she had a good life and good pay job,she was 84 is time to go!

    February 5, 2013 at 9:26 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Rock

    Did she take dictation like a good little girl?

    January 31, 2013 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Petra man

    these "Christian" zealots are the same Lot who are going to get a shocking surprise when they pass into the spirit realm and find folks from the playboy lot better off then themselves. I am sure these same zelots are going to turn out to be some of the worst troublemakers 100 years from now in the spirit world. wait and see

    January 31, 2013 at 3:23 am | Report abuse |
  7. I wer

    I wonder who these "Christian" zealots are writing for? Surely they don't think their Taliban-like approach is going to make any converts in this forum. I think they're actually writing only for their own egos, proving to themselves that they're SOOOOO much more righteous than everybody else. I'll bet these folks make their postings and then come back to them ten minutes later so they can grin about how right, how witty, and how damning to unbelievers their writings are. What's their little book of myths say about pride?

    January 30, 2013 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • hlordlior

      Little book of myths? It says that you are a fool, that is what it says.

      January 30, 2013 at 8:39 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jason Jackinsky

    I am sad Mary O'Conner passed away. All religious people who are people who believe in anything (especially those who are posting any nasty emails on this post, you can email me at of any cultural outlook from a stance, or are very staunch in your religious opinions: You should look into your book of ways to win your ways to your many different heavens, or paradises and should look inside your hearts and ask yourselves who you have been your whole lives. Then realize that all of the blessed beings you proclaim to serve each profoundly respect, mourn and treasure Mary, O'conner with all of their beautiful hearts. Blessings and Namaste to, Mary O'Conner, the Playboy family, Hugh Heffner, and all of her family... Blessings and Namaste my friends!

    January 30, 2013 at 8:22 pm | Report abuse |
  9. wisdom4u2

    NOOOOO!! Say it ain't so, Joe!! Even though I've never met Mary in person, I feel like I know her. God rest her soul. 🙁

    January 30, 2013 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
  10. LOGIC IN NY...

    all blocked-

    January 30, 2013 at 5:30 pm | Report abuse |
  11. less

    American culture, humor, and enlightenment as only Hef could express it: "She gave great phone" Guffaw.

    January 30, 2013 at 5:27 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Debbie

    I don't want his stuff, but I've seen her when channel surfing, had no idea she was anywhere near that age, she looked great to be in her 80's

    January 30, 2013 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Lisa

    She seemed like a cool lady...sorry to hear she passed away.

    January 30, 2013 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Nelson

    There are some very nice comments written about Hef and Mrs. Mary. I wish people would stop trying to make jokes when someone passed away, this person was someones mother and grandmother. Maybe it wouldn't be so funny when your mother dies.

    January 30, 2013 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
  15. clown

    Hugh is 86 he will be mourning himself pretty soon also I would imagine.

    January 30, 2013 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Rock

    i wonder what Hef's conference room smelled like

    January 30, 2013 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |
  17. topher

    Its not a religious rant, its God's word.

    January 30, 2013 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Holy MOses

      in what language? how does a statue talk and have a word? the bible was writtne by pagan Constantine 300 years later you knucklehead!

      January 30, 2013 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      It was written by men who made up an imaginary guy in the sky to help explain how things happened because they didn't understand much then. It was also used to keep the mindless people of the day in line. What don't you get about that?

      January 30, 2013 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Debbie

      Leviticus is God's word?? So if someone butchers an adulterer that's what God wants?/ he was a sick bas#$rd

      January 30, 2013 at 4:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Smarter than ewe

      @ Dan. Well put. And I'm sure they were already thinking about how to brainwash the people while writing the best selling science fiction novel of all times. Starting with no taxation of religious real estate.

      January 30, 2013 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Sadie

    After all those years together, it would be like losing a family member. I'm sure they had a very close bond. Condolences to her family, friends, and to Mr Hefner.

    January 30, 2013 at 1:13 pm | Report abuse |
  19. jj4kj

    Don't just say I miss her, do something, give money to family, give money to charity ,
    take care of her loved ones , pets, give money , money , money, then your words will
    be meaningful.

    January 30, 2013 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Peter

      So when a family member or friend of yours passes away, you will start giving out money money money (like you said) to charity.

      January 30, 2013 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • cleareye1

      Hefner doesn't have money to throw around like the old days. He is owned by bankers like the rest of us. Not cool of him to make a joke on her passing though.

      January 30, 2013 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Alex

    She gives GREAT PHONE????

    January 30, 2013 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  21. M

    Once again, I am appalled and disgusted at the comments being made about someone who died. Regardless of your opinions about Playboy and/or Mr. Hefner, it is clear that he truly loved and appreciated his secretary and is mourning her just as he would a member of his family. Have some humanity and class people. Rest in peace Mary.

    January 30, 2013 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
  22. palintwit

    Hugh Hefner is mourning the loss of his secretary and tea party patriots are still mourning the loss of Peggy Rea, the actress that played Boss Hogg's wife. YEEEEEHHHAAAAAAAAA

    January 30, 2013 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
  23. Marie

    Mary (whom I do not know personally) worked hard. She worked until the age of 84, that kind of dedication and determination is truly unheard of today. Women from her time are tough as nails and work like dogs. My grandmother just turned 80 and she could work me under the table anyday. Although she never had a job job, I have seen her blood sweat and tears, my whole life. Women this just goes to show us that we must not be spoiled pampered little devils and we need to work harder for ourselves. I am truly amazed by my grandmother, Ms. Mary, and all of the others out there just like them. Rest in Peace Mary.

    January 30, 2013 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • value

      I'm glad Hef values her and her work so much. So many people today, men and women, have absolutely no idea what they have in human assets both in the office and at home. Wake up people and appreciate the talent, effort and results of your associates. Hopefully some of them will also appreciate what you offer.

      January 30, 2013 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Death

      "She worked until the age of 84, that kind of dedication and determination is truly unheard of today."

      She had a dream job working at the Playboy Mansion surrounded by luxury, even when she was "on the clock" it was a fantastic place to "work". I would keep working past "retirement" too, let's not get too crazy here people, she lived, she had a great job, she died, your turn will come.

      January 30, 2013 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  24. justme

    I'm not going to say what's on my mind because i can't think of much good to say about this.

    January 30, 2013 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
  25. Geezer

    Hef should either be in jail or at my house with his bevy of girls.

    January 30, 2013 at 9:58 am | Report abuse |
    • geyser

      That's "bevvy" and as a girl, I don't go for geezers. Even with all your experience, I bet you still haven't learned how to use your hands or bothered to learn what a "girl" wants. Better off with a toy.

      January 30, 2013 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kim

      Sorry Geyser. "Bevy" has only one "V" as does the word visualize, so visualize using a dictionary next time BEFORE you comment.

      January 30, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kim

      RIP Mary. It's tough to find loyal employees who can be trusted and don't dish the dirt to the tabloids. She'll be very hard to replace.

      January 30, 2013 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  26. rip mary

    we'll miss you

    January 30, 2013 at 9:27 am | Report abuse |
  27. rad666

    Just last night, my wife was talking about a coworker and she referred to her as her "office daughter."

    January 30, 2013 at 9:12 am | Report abuse |
  28. Diana Martin

    So sorry for your loss Mr Hefner, she was a terrific woman and will be missed

    January 30, 2013 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
  29. Dynamic

    Looks like I'm up with the crazies. Good luck to all who persevere to love in this world filled with those who worship hatred.

    January 30, 2013 at 4:37 am | Report abuse |
  30. Vinny

    RIP MARY, and libbleblobbler, You are evil and have your own place reserved in hell! Tired of people like you who use gods name to promote hate! let me guess, Westboro church idiot??

    January 30, 2013 at 4:19 am | Report abuse |
  31. Louiiis

    Oh, and don't worry, Crystal will be honoring Hef's secretary soon enough herself with her own permanent night out.

    January 29, 2013 at 11:40 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Lindalou

    Doesn't sound like she ever married..hope she didn't waste her life pining away for the boss. That would be too sad!

    January 29, 2013 at 11:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Papa Frank

      She was my daughters neighbor and my grandkids really liked her. Her husband passed away last April so she was not pining away for Hef.

      January 29, 2013 at 11:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • joe

      thanks. That is good to know.

      January 30, 2013 at 5:12 am | Report abuse |
  33. nancy

    his new wife goes out on the town when his best friend dies???? how disrespectful.

    January 29, 2013 at 11:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Epidi

      Her last name was O'Connor. Sounds to me they were doing the Celtic tradition of having a drink in the deceased's honor. Quite acceptable.

      January 30, 2013 at 1:12 am | Report abuse |
    • dfg

      nancy, you know not what you speak. In our family we have a HUGE party instead of funerals. We theme the party based on the person who passed away. We don't do the funeral home lame thing, no casket, no stupid speech.... just a big party and talk about the individual, put up pictures, release balloons, etc.

      January 30, 2013 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • nancy

      when someone in my family dies the last thing I want to do is party and release balloons......I want them back.

      January 30, 2013 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
  34. RIP Mary

    I'm sorry your dead.

    January 29, 2013 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • sick of christian phonies

      You are a real joke...unless this is really Dana Carvey (SNL's "the church lady"). Read you Book of Myths, dolt- even that pack of fables says "judge not, that you be judged", and keep your ugly piehole shut.

      January 30, 2013 at 7:35 am | Report abuse |
    • sick of christian phonies

      RIP Mary: My Dana Carvey response was to a post responding to yours...a nice christian condemning her to hell...that was removed in the interim. It wasn't a response to you.

      January 30, 2013 at 7:38 am | Report abuse |
  35. I'm still here..

    now that you mention from what we recall she does look like heff....heff is a much happier person -

    January 29, 2013 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  36. tdsd

    She looked like his mother.

    January 29, 2013 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • i agree

      she looks like heff...heff is not bitter though a big difference.

      January 29, 2013 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Hef

    loved her dearly..he will miss her i'm sure!!!!

    January 29, 2013 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Chris L.

    Years ago I enjoyed the pleasure of employment at PMW for several years. A story about Mary: It was her birthday and our department was debating whether or not to send Mary a card. My boss at the time asked my opinion, and in my infinite wisdom I blurted out something like, "Let's kiss her ass, and get her a birthday card." My boss at the time decided to tell Mary what I had said, and ignoring my protests made a call to her office. Immediately my thoughts ran the gambit of being suspended to being flat out fired. Instead, and to my surprise, Mary called me and said that was the best birthday wish she had received because it was honest. More about Mary: She was instrumental in the running of Playboy and always had Hefner's back (best interest) in personal and professional matter's ensuring Hefner's kindness was not being taken advantage of. Mary was Hefner's confidant. For me, this story spoke volumes about her. I'll miss her.

    January 29, 2013 at 6:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • DWileyOne

      Yours is one of the few truly nice and heartfelt comments ... so many of these others are just obnoxious and ignorant. Thank you.

      January 30, 2013 at 1:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Mik

      Yes, thank you for the heartfelt comment about Mary. I also believe she was Hef's confidant and best friend and I believe he will miss her terribly. For those of you talking about Hell... why don't you GO TO Hell! Hypocrites... most of you are probably cheating on your wife and trying to entice the neighbours kids into your garage with candy... eh-holes.

      January 30, 2013 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
    • coaster26

      Chris L.

      I never knew much about her, but it sounds like she was a great pleasure to be around, truely a genuine person. I can see why so many will miss her.

      January 30, 2013 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Rhiannonyoucry

    He probably should have married Mary instead of his hundred year younger wife. She was of an appropriate age for him.

    January 29, 2013 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse |
  40. nice lady


    January 29, 2013 at 5:59 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Dizzyd

    It's sweet to see how he obviously adored her as a friend. My condolences to all.

    January 29, 2013 at 5:59 pm | Report abuse |
  42. alicia silvas

    Aaaww how sad i remember her from the show may u r.i.p mary.

    January 29, 2013 at 5:56 pm | Report abuse |
  43. Jessica kuzelka

    My condolences

    January 29, 2013 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  44. my 5th grade teacher was named

    mrs musta

    January 29, 2013 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse |
  45. GulpOff

    Mary musta seen it all...

    January 29, 2013 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
  46. its what god wants...

    and i will follow my masters orders...

    January 29, 2013 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
  47. Shikabane Hime

    Sending my condolences to all who knew her. She must have been very special and dam*ed good at her job!

    January 29, 2013 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Hannah

    Nice to know he actually had a woman of his own generation to care about and rely on. His public personna makes him look foolish. Guess he wants to be remembered with a female youngster on his arm when his time comes.

    Hannah's Take

    January 29, 2013 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Nobody is fading away nobody is going anywhere

    apologies will happen and no fight so we can all rest in peace....

    January 29, 2013 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Apology will happen so we can have real peace..

    not he fake peace...

    January 29, 2013 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Allie

    RIP Mary. You were a hoot on GND. May have to watch a few episodes with a glass of wine for ya 😉 favorite Mary-moment was Holly discussing "fur bikinis" with her.

    January 29, 2013 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Peace

    Awww, sux to lose an old friend. RIP Mary O'Connor.

    January 29, 2013 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
  53. V¡xen

    R.I.P Ms. Mary.

    January 29, 2013 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |
  54. Was

    She was his se xymary not secretary. Rest in peace Mary.

    January 29, 2013 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
  55. Lonnie

    Of all the women in his life, she was there the longest. He lost his best friend.

    January 29, 2013 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
  56. True

    he adored her...she was his secretary forever....

    January 29, 2013 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  57. RIP

    Sorry for your loss Hugh. Weird that you loved someone your own age.

    January 29, 2013 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |

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