In Memoriam: TV Stars Who Died in 2017

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While it is sad to think that many of these TV personalities will not be seen in anything new, their legacies have left audiences with much to remember. From shows like Twin Peaks, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and Big Love the entertainment world has been brighter because of their contributions.

Walking In The Rain
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David Cassidy

1950-2017

Cause of death: Liver failure

David Cassidy starred in hit television series The Partridge Family and became a teen icon.

Celebrities Attend Race - 2014 Indy 500
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Jim Nabors

1930-2017

Cause of death: Natural causes

Nabors starred in the popular television series as Gomer Pyle The Andy Griffith Show and was also a professional singer.

2006 Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon - Day 1
Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Jerry Lewis

1926-2017

Cause of death: Cardiovascular disease

Lewis was a comedian, actor, singer, producer, director, and screenwriter. He was nicknamed the “King of Comedy” and partnered with Dean Martin.

Della Reese
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Della Reese

1931-2017

Cause of death: Not known

Reese was best known for her role as Tess on Touched By an Angel. She was also an accomplished gospel singer.

The Grand Gala VIP Reception Held At The Muhammad Ali Center
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Mychael Knight

1978-2017

Cause of death: Complications from irritable bowl syndrome

Knight was a successful fashion designers who got his break from being on Season 3 of Project Runway.

Playboy Comes To London
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Hugh Hefner

1926-2017

Cause of death: Natural causes

Hefner started Playboy and was Editor-in-chief of the magazine, which he founded in 1953.

Nelsan Ellis
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Nelsan Ellis

1977-2017

Cause of death: Complications from heart failure

Ellis was best known for his role as Lafayette Reynolds on HBO’s True Blood. His family revealed that the actor struggled with years of alcohol and drug abuse.

Sam Shepard
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Sam Shepard

1943-2017

Cause of death: Complications from ALS

Shepard was a playwright, actor, writer, and author. He most recently he played Robert Rayburn on Bloodline.

JOHN HEARD
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John Heard

1946-2017

Cause of death: Heart attack

Heard was a TV and film actor . You probably know him as Peter McCallister in Home Alone and he was nominated for an Emmy for his work on The Sopranos.

Harry Dean Stanton
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Harry Dean Stanton

1926-2017

Cause of death: Natural causes

Stanton was an actor and singer. He has roles in movies like Cold Hand Luke, The Godfather, and Alien.

Premiere Of Walt Disney Studios'
Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Robert Guillaume

1927-2017

Cause of death: Prostate Cancer

Robert Guillaume starred in groundbreaking television comedies Benson and Soap.

Frank Vincent

Frank Vincent

1939-2017

Cause of death: Complications related to heart surgery

Vincent was best known for his many roles in mafia movies and television shows, such as Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas and HBO’s The Sopranos.

Jay Thomas
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Jay Thomas

1948-2017

Cause of death: Cancer

An Emmy-Award winning actor, Thomas is best known for his work on sitcoms Murphy Brown and Cheers.

June Foray
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June Foray

1917-2017

Cause of death: Undisclosed

Foray was a voice actress best known for providing the voices of Rocky and Natasha in The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show.

Martin Landau
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Martin Landau

1928-2017

Cause of death: Organ failure

Oscar winner Landau was well known for his film and television roles, including his run on the original Mission: Impossible TV series.

Adam West
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Adam West

1928-2017

Cause of death: Leukemia

TV’s Batman was known as much for being the caped crusader as he was for being a nice guy around Hollywood.

Roger Moore
The actors agreed Speedman was "a disaster of a boyfriend."

Roger Moore

1927-2017

Cause of death: Cancer

The British actor portrayed James Bond on the big screen.

Roger Ailes
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Roger Ailes

1940-2017

Cause of death: Subdural hematoma

The embattled former Fox News president was a key figure in the modern American political system.

Powers Boothe
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Powers Booth

1940-2017

Cause of death: Heart attack

The Emmy-winning actor most recently starred on the CMT drama Nashville.

Tribeca Talks After The Movie: By Sidney Lumet
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Jonathan Demme

1940-2017

Cause of death: Esophageal cancer and complications from heart disease

Demme was known for his directorial work on the hit films Silence of the Lambs and Married to the Mob. As well as his TV work.

Erin Moran
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Erin Moran

1960-2017

Cause of death: Cancer

The actress will be remembered as Joanie Cunningham on Happy Days and on its spinoff, Joanie Loves Chachi.

Charlie Murphy
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Charlie Murphy

1959-2017

Cause of death: Leukemia

The actor and comedian was best known for his role on the sketch comedy show, Chappelle’s Show, and as a writer on some of his brother Eddie Murphy’s films.

Don Rickles
Mark Mainz/Getty Images

Don Rickles

1926-2017

Cause of death: Liver failure

The ‘Merchant of Mean’ was one of the greatest insult comics to ever live. But by all accounts, he was also one of the nicest.

Bill Paxton
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Bill Paxton

1955-2017

Cause of death: Complications related to surgery

The actor may have been well known for his role in films like Titanic but his role as Bill Henrickson on Big Love was iconic. Paxton passed shortly after filming his final scenes for the CBS show Training Day and appeared in a slew of other TV roles.

Mary Tyler Moore
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Mary Tyler Moore

1936-2017

Moore was best known as the lead character of her self titled show which aired from 1970 to 1977. The actress also had a strong presence on The Dick Van Dyke Show where she starred alongside the man himself. Her most recent credit includes a small role on the show Hot in Cleveland.

Robert Osborne
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Robert Osborne

1932-2017

This TV personality was well known for his profound knowledge of Hollywood and the films that were made there. He hosted many specials on Turner Classic Movies, and appeared on shows like 20/20 and Dateline.

Chuck Barris
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Chuck Barris

1929-2017

Barris was the producer behind some of the most iconic game shows. The most popular among the titles he produced was The Newlywed Game.

Miguel Ferrer
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Miguel Ferrer

1955-2017

Cause of death: Cancer

This veteran TV star played a regular role on the show Crossing Jordan and was also known for his role in the cult hit Twin Peaks. Ferrer’s time on television hasn’t come to an end yet, he reprized his Twin Peaks character for the show’s revival, set for release later this year.

Neil Fingleton
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Neil Fingleton

1980-2017

Cause of death: Heart failure

This young talent had been featured on popular series like Game of Thrones and Doctor Who. Fingleton was reported to stand over seven feet tall.

Barbara Hale
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Barbara Hale

1922-2017

This actress was best known for her role as Della Street on the show Perry Mason. Hale’s other credits include Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color.

WARREN FROST
ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)

Warren Frost

1925-2017

Cause of death: Illness

Frost’s credits include David Lynch’s Twin Peaks, Matlock, and a recurring role on Seinfeld. He also finished filming his part in the revival of Twin Peaks like fellow actor Miguel Ferrer.

George
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George “The Animal” Steele

1937-2017

Starting out as a professional wrestler, Steele appeared in a slew of wrestling shows and specials. Among the legend’s credits are shows like WWF Challenge and Saturday Night’s Main Event.

Mike Connors
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Mike Connors

1925-2017

Connors is probably most famous for his part as the title character in the show Mannix which aired from 1967-1975. The actor also had roles in shows like Tightrope and The Love Boat.

RICHARD HATCH
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Richard Hatch

1945-2017

Cause of death: Pancreatic cancer

This actor appeared in the original and more recent version of the show Battlestar Galactica. Hatch appeared in many popular shows over the years including The Love Boat and Dynasty.

Brenda Buttner
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Brenda Buttner

1962-2017

Cause of death: Cancer

The Fox newscaster was best known as the host of Bulls & Bears. Buttner held the position of host since she began on the show in 2006.

Tony Rosato
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Tony Rosato

1954-2017

Rosato who was born in Italy lent his voice to animated shows like The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 as Luigi. He also had a role on the sketch comedy series SCTV with actors like Eugene Levy and Andrea Martin.

Dick Gautier
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Dick Gautier

1931-2017

This established actor had a role on the popular series Get Smart as well as the show Mr. Terrific in the sixties. Gautier also lent his voice to popular animated series’ The Transformers and G.I. Joe.

Frank Pellegrino Sr
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Frank Pellegrino

1944-2017

Cause of death: Lung cancer

Pellegrino had found his niche with the mobster genre starring in films like Goodfellas. The actor’s best known TV role though, would have to be as Frank Cubitoso on the series The Sopranos.

Alan Colmes
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Alan Colmes

1950-2017

Colmes was a TV personality known for his reporting on shows like Hannity & Colmes and The O’Reilly Factor.

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