Comedian Patrice O’Neal, best known for his appearances on “The Office,” “Tough Crowd” and the “Opie & Anthony” radio show, has passed away at the age of 41.
O’Neal suffered a stroke last month, though his ongoing condition was not publically released. Today, O’Neal’s rep told TMZ, “It is with terrible sadness we must report that Patrice O’Neal has passed away this morning at 7:00 AM due to the complications of the stroke he suffered on October 19.”
“Many of us have lost a close and loved friend; all of us have lost a true comic genius. His mother, who was also his best friend, was at his side. The family wishes to thank all of the fans and friends who have expressed an outpouring of love and support for Patrice these past weeks. We ask that you please respect the family’s request for privacy at this time.”
“Opie & Anthony” host Gregg “Opie” Hughes tweeted about Patrice’s passing, saying, “Yes it’s true that our pal Patrice O’Neal has passed away. The funniest and best thinker I’ve ever known PERIOD.”
Close friend and comedian Jim Norton took to Twitter as well, saying, “I couldn’t possibly love a friend more than I love you. Goodbye brother.”
Patrice was recently seen on the “Comedy Central Roast of Charlie Sheen,” where his off-the-cuff remarks about the troubled actor were a highlight of the show. Sheen has reacted to the death, saying in a statement, “The world at large lost a brilliant man today. I will forever be inspired by his nobility, his grace and his epic talent. Patrice had that rare ‘light’ around him and inside him. My tears today are for the tremendous loss to his true friends and loving family.”
He also appeared on “Chappelle’s Show,” “Arrested Development,” “Web Junk 20” and his own Comedy Central special called “Elephant in the Room.” O’Neal also suffered from diabetes, although there is no word whether the disease contributed to his death.
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