On Wednesday, a fire in her West Los Angeles home claimed the life of Doris Bergman, a prominent Hollywood publicist noted for inviting foster children at her Emmy and Oscar giving lounges. 68 years old was her age.
Firefighters who responded to the 2:30 a.m. blaze in the Mar Vista area discovered Bergman, her husband Albert Sassoe Jr., 65, and their cat inside the single-story home. The Los Angeles affiliate of NBC announced the news on Wednesday. According to the report, the house was completely engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived. About 20 minutes after the fire was put out, the bodies of the victims were discovered.
Multiple sources, citing the Los Angeles Fire Department, stated that the home did not have working smoke alarms. After working in public relations and nonprofits in the 1970s and ’80s, Bergman launched her consulting firm, Bergman PR, in 2004. The company represents a wide range of creative professionals, including comedians, chefs, authors, designers, and more.
According to the Mirror, she was well-known for hosting celebrity visitors including Jane Lynch, Brigitte Nielsen, Marilu Henner, and Judd Nelson at her style and gift suites at award events like the Emmys and the Oscars. At the George Lopez Celebrity Golf Classic, she had a gift lounge for 15 years.
Though she was involved with several nonprofits, Wednesday’s Child—which helps place foster children with permanent families—received the most attention for her efforts on behalf of children in need. Recently, she has made an effort to bring kids from the group into the Hollywood scene by inviting them to several of her events.
Her late husband, Albert Sassoe, was a prominent Los Angeles attorney in the fields of business law, employment law, and insurance. His company bore his name.
Sue Wong, a well-known fashion designer, expressed her shock and sadness at the news of a close friend’s passing on Facebook. They became close throughout Covid, she wrote. We shared a strong connection in our minds. Her amazing sarcastic wit, intelligence, generosity of spirit, and wicked black, dark humour are all things I shall miss much.
Publicist Anthony Turk told Fox 11 Los Angeles, “It’s just so terrible and it’s so devastating and, so unexpected.” Doris staged gorgeous events that drew in the Hollywood community and connected the Hollywood community with charitable groups; she is one of the most fascinating, engaging individuals you will ever meet, from her fire engine red hair to her gruff voice and her heart of gold. Doris’s harsh and gruff demeanour may put off anyone who don’t already know her. But once you found out who she was, you couldn’t help but be touched by her kindness. One could not find another person who was quite like her.