The whole world took notice this past December when the mother and Lowell, Mass., native was portrayed in an Oscar-winning performance by Melissa Leo in The Fighter.
Ward passed away on Wednesday at Boston's Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital of cardiac arrest, no more than a day after she was taken off life support, the Lowell Sun reports. She was 79 years old.
Ward had been hospitalized since January, when she suffered a heart attack and a stroke and was pronounced dead for 45 minutes before regaining consciousness and began breathing on her own again. She lapsed into a coma on Tuesday evening and was taken off life support.
She is remembered fondly by her son, Micky, as a strong-spirited woman who had a "heart of gold."
Alice Ward is survived by her nine children, 19 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren. Funeral plans have not yet been finalized.