Dustin Diamond, best known for playing Samuel Powers in the hit TV series Saved by the Bell, has died at age 44 after a battle with stage four lung cancer.
A rep for Diamond told TMZ that the TV actor died Monday morning. “His condition had greatly declined since last week, and he was taken off of breathing machines in an attempt to get him to hospice care. His GF was by his side when he passed away,” according to the outlet.
In addition to his work as an actor, Diamond was a director and stand-up comedian.
Here’s what you need to know about his family life:
1. His Ex-Fiancee Was a Professional Clown
According to The Sun, Diamond’s ex-fiancee, Amanda Schutz, was a former professional clown and worked under the name Loli Pop.
Her LinkedIn reveals that she is originally from New York. Her bio reads, “… Loli Pop the Clown is fun, loveable, and the perfect entertainer for children of all ages. Loli Pop specializes in providing interactive entertainment, face painting, balloon twisting, and more.”
LinkedIn also shows that Schutz’s work as Loli Pop was featured in a Good Living cover story in April 2012 for the Ozaukee County Press.
Diamond and Schultz were “briefly engaged” in 2014 but broke things off one year later. She earned her BA in Arts Administration from Wagner College.
2. He Was Married to Jennifer Misner
In 2009, Diamond married his girlfriend, Jennifer Misner. The two separated four years later.
During a 2013 interview with Vulture, Diamond was asked if the disparity between the way his wife grew up and the way he grew up impacted their shared television experiences.
Diamond said, “One of the great things for me is I’ve got a trophy wife. She’s twenty-five and I’m thirty-six. So she’s an entire generation younger, and because of that, there’s stuff I missed that I can go back and appreciate now with her introducing it to me.”
The Sun reported that Misner has worked for the Holiday Inn Express hotel company in Pennsylvania since 2010.
3. He Spent Four Months in Jail for ‘Trying to Protect His Fiancee’
In 2016, Diamond opened up to Extra TV about his three-month stint in jail for “allegedly stabbing a 25-year-old man in Port Washington, Wisconsin”, according to a police report obtained by ABC News.
The outlet wrote, “Diamond was found guilty of carrying a concealed weapon and disorderly conduct after a three-day trial in June 2015. Both charges are misdemeanors.”
In court, the actor argued that he was trying to protect Schultz, his fiancée at the time, after he claimed she was punched in the face when she tried to “stop a group of people who were trying to take a picture of him.”
According to ABC, Diamond was found guilty of carrying a concealed weapon and disorderly conduct. Schutz, meanwhile, was convicted of disorderly conduct.
In the end, the actor was released early from jail for what ABC described as “good behavior that included performing janitorial work, cleaning floors and doing laundry.”
4. Diamond’s Mother Worked as a Computer Operator
According to Eighties Kids, Diamond was raised in a Jewish family. His father taught digital electronics, while his mother was a computer operator, as detailed in his 1877 book, Behind the Bell: Behind the Scenes of Saved by the Bell With the Guy Who was There for Everything.”
Diamond’s first acting credit came in 1987, playing the voice of “Chubby Kid” in the TV movie, Yogi’s Great Escape. After that, he played Little Sonny in the TV series It’s a Living.
During his interview with Vulture, Diamond was asked if there’s a discord between his sense of nostalgia and that of those who grew up watching him onscreen.
He said, “Every kid that was a part of that generation of those live-action shows was, whether we realized it or not, becoming part of nostalgia for other people’s childhood. People who watched might look back and say, ‘Hey, I remember these. I grew up with this stuff.’ And when they watch it, it brings instant good memories back. But for the people who were on those shows, it’s like watching home movies of your friends from sixth grade.”
5. He Had No Children
According to a previous Heavy article, Diamond did not have any children.
Diamond and Misner, however, dated for years before marrying. During that time, Misner became pregnant but suffered a miscarriage. The miscarriage was the result of an ectopic pregnancy, according to The Sun.
In the wake of his death, Diamond’s reps have asked for privacy for his team and family. Diamond’s representatives issued a statement to E! News that read, “We please ask that you give room for privacy to our team and Mr. Diamond’s family during this tragic time, as we grieve and remember the memories spent together,” the statement said in part. “This loss is as much stinging as it is sudden.”