'Sesame Street's' Maria retiring after 45 years

By Alexandra Herrera  |  July 2, 2015 at 10:14 AM
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CHICAGO, July 2 (UPI) -- Sesame Street is losing its long time human resident, Sonia Manzano, 65, better known as Maria Rodriguez-Figueroa, who is set to retire after 45 years on 123 Sesame Street.

Manzano, who is one of the original cast members on the long running PBS show, announced her retirement on Tuesday during her address at the American Library Association Annual Conference according to Entertainment Tonight.

Having started on the show at age 22, she was one of the first Hispanics on national television and went on to be nominated for two Emmys for her acting and won 15 for her work as a writer, reports The Washington Post.

Manzano's character grew up on Sesame Street, worked at the library and married Luis, played by Emilio Delgado. The two characters would go on to have a daughter, Gabi.

Time reported Manzano was emotional announcing her departure. Many fans tweeted that Maria will be missed, to thanking her for her groundbreaking work on the series.

Manzano also went on to write books, including a No Dogs Allowed, an adult novel and a memoir. While she has announced her retirement, Manzano hasn't mentioned when her last episode will air.

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