Fans of hit 1990s TV show ‘Fresh Prince of Bel Air’ starring Will Smith will be sad to hear that James Avery who played the hugely popular ‘Uncle Phil’ has passed away aged 65.
Details into his death are sketchy as such however Alfonso Ribeiro who also starred on the show as Carlton alongside Will Smith and James Avery confirmed his death.
Alfonso took to his Facebook page to share the news:
“The world has lost a truly special man. I am very saddened to say that James Avery has passed.
“Even though he played my father on TV, he was a wonderful father figure to me in life. He will be deeply missed.”
The actor also posted via his official Twitter account and said:
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
TMZ say their source tells them that Avery took a turn for the worse yesterday following recent surgery for an undisclosed illness.
His wife Barbara was with him in hospital though had left his bedside for a brief moment according to TMZ. On returning she learned of his death.
Will Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith has since taken to her Facebook page and posted a touching tribute which reads:
“Happy New Year everyone! I was hoping to start the new year differently but we have lost yet another friend. James Avery who we all lovingly know as Uncle Phil from The Fresh Prince has passed.
“Our condolences to aunt Florence (his mother), Miss Barbara (his wife) and all those who loved him. Rest in peace James.”
It has been revealed that Avery passed away following complications from open heart surgery.
We at Unreality TV wish to send our thoughts and sincere condolences to the family and friends of James at this time including his wife Barbara, the Smith family and of course Alfonso Ribeiro.