Beloved actor and comedian Tim Conway has passed away at the age of 85, his family confirmed Tuesday morning. The actor died at 8:45 a.m. after a long bout with illness, Conway's daughter Kelly, confirmed in a press release Tuesday morning.
The actor is best known for his work on "The Carol Burnett Show" where he cracked his castmates up with his signature deadpan comic delivery. The cast included Harvey Korman, Vicki Lawrence and Lyle Waggoner. He joined the cast of the show in 1975 as a regular after frequently appearing as a guest.
He was nominated for 13 Emmys and won six during the course of his career including four for his work on "The Carol Burnett Show," and two more for guest appearances on "Coach" and "30 Rock."
"The love he gave us, and the laughter he gave the world will never be replaced but will be remembered forever," Kelly Conway said in a statement. "He is at peace now but I will miss him every second of every day until we meet again in heaven. We knew he would have to leave us someday but that day came too soon."
In lieu of gifts or flowers, the family is requesting donations be made to The Lou Ruvo Brain Center at the Cleveland Clinic in Las Vegas, Nevada. Conway is survived by his wife of 35 years, Charlene, his stepdaughter, his six biological children including KFI's Tim Conway Jr. and two granddaughters.
Conway never let a chance for a joke pass him by. His bio on his official website is vintage Conway:
“I was born and then I did `The Carol Burnett Show' for eleven years. What else is there to know? I have six Emmy's. Big deal. I am also in The Comedy Hall of Fame, it was a natural since I spent a lot of my time in grade school out in the hall. I went to Bowling Green State University for eleven years. A very slow lerner (I proof read my bio). I was in the army (ours) for two years and was in 'McHales Navy' for three years. That is a total of five years of service. My ambition was to be a jockey, but at my weight, even the horses were asking me to get off. I have seven children, two grand children and a puppy. I have been married since 1984, a record for Hollywood. I do not have a serious thought in my head. Enjoy the show.”
In a statement, Carol Burnett said she was "heartbroken" to hear about Conway's death.
"He was one in a million, not only as a brilliant comedian but as a loving human being," she said in statement released by her publicist. "I cherish the times we had together both on the screen and off. He’ll be in my heart forever.”
Burnett wasn't the only one mourning Tim Conway's death. Celebrities who had been influenced by the comedian over the years took to Twitter to mourn the legend.
“When I was a kid watching `The Carol Burnett Show,' no one made me laugh harder than Tim Conway,” Conan O'Brien wrote on his Twitter page. “What a sweet and effortlessly funny man.”
Conan's longtime sidekick, Andy Richter also mourned the comedian's death, writing that Conway was one of his heroes and said he had the opportunity to work with him at a New York comedy festival.
“When we met to "rehearse," he made me laugh for a solid hour,” Richter wrote. “He didn't have to. For him to treat me as even close to an equal will always be a cherished honor.”
Comedian Bob Newhart also added his condolences, saying he and his wife Gina had "lost a dear friend."
“He was one of the greatest, if not the greatest,” Newhart said. “I will always remember our regular Tuesday dinners together with Tim and Sharkey (Charlene), Dick and Dolly Martin, Don and Barbara Rickles, Mike and Marylou Connors, Eydie and Steve Lawrence and Ginnie and me. No one should be allowed to laugh that much. We will miss him greatly.”
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