Beloved actor James Avery has passed away. Read on for the sad details on his passing as well as on the wonderful man we say goodbye to …
1. Avery Passed Away on New Year’s Eve
It has been reported by TMZ that the 65-year-old actor died in an L.A. hospital last night on New Year’s Eve.
2. His Wife Missed Saying Goodbye to Her Husband
Rip James Avery. So sad his wife left to get something to eat and when she came back he was dead pic.twitter.com/oibE40TbZC
— caramel cocaine (@caramel_kaii) January 1, 2014
Apparently, Avery’s wife Barbara sat at his bedside without leaving at all. She only left for a short moment to get something to eat and when she returned, she learned he had passed away.
3. James Avery Recently Underwent Open Heart Surgery
Reportedly, Avery’s death is linked to the open heart surgery he recently had undergone for an undisclosed illness. Last night, he “took a turn for the worst” and passed away from complications from the procedure according to the NY Daily News.
CNN talks about Avery’s childhood and life, describing him as:
A classically trained actor and poet, Avery grew up in Atlantic City, New Jersey, where he was raised by a single mother. He served in the Navy during the Vietnam War and first appeared onscreen as a dancer in an uncredited role in the 1980 film “The Blues Brothers.”
4. Many Know Avery as ‘Uncle Phil’
James Avery played the classic character of Uncle Phil on the show “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”, which starred Will Smith. Fans of the show are overwhelmed and remembering the star via social media. The term “Uncle Phil” is trending very high on Twitter. #freshprince is also trending.
5. Former Cast-Mates Are Already Paying Their Respects
I'm deeply saddened to say that James Avery has passed away. He was a second father to me. I will miss him greatly. pic.twitter.com/UrW0EeBFbO
— Alfonso Ribeiro (@alfonso_ribeiro) January 1, 2014
Alfonso Ribeiro played the part of James Avery’s son “Carlton Banks” on “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”. Today, he tweeted about the loss of his on-screen dad … He also posted something very sweet on Facebook as well, using the same photo.
Other co-stars are tweeting about the death of James Avery as well.
Rest in Peace James Avery. Love you. One of the best actors of our time.
— Miguel A Nunez Jr (@MiguelANunezJr) January 1, 2014
On an interesting note, besides playing Phillip Banks, many may not realize, but James Avery was also the voice of “Shredder” from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.