Eric "The Actor" Lynch, Howard Stern's diminutive and unlikely foil, has passed away, and the radio legend said today that it's a tough pill to swallow.
The Stern fan favorite, who was just three-and-a-half feet tall and resided in Sacramento, Calif., died in an area hospital after suffering heart problems.
Eric "The Actor" Lynch died at age 39, which in itself was longer than many who knew him felt he would last. But that doesn't mean it's any less tragic.
The wheelchair-bound Lynch earned a position in Howard Stern's "Wack Pack" after he began calling into the shock jock's radio show back in 2002.
His blunt, endearingly argumentative style won over Stern, and his fans.
Stern paid sincere homage to Lynch on his SiriusXM show Monday.
"What was so fascinating was that he would just give me s--t every single day, and stand up to me," Stern said of Lynch, who often went toe-to-toe with him.
"Anybody else would have been begging me or kowtowing to me because I had the power to put him on the air, but it was exactly because he didn't give a s--t that made him so cool."
"I knew [with] his situation with his health that we'd lose him at any time, but I never really thought the day would come, because he always seemed to be beating the odds."
"It affected me so much, and even my wife ... she was crying, she felt so sad to hear that Eric was gone and she couldn't explain why. That's how I think all of us are feeling right now."
Big-time Lynch fan Jimmy Kimmel also spoke with Stern about him. Kimmel reflected:
"The fact that Eric had no respect for you whatsoever is what I liked best about him."
"You'd talk to this tiny little guy in a wheelchair who lived with his parents and didn't have a whole lot going on ... and he would argue with you as if you were equals."
"And you would argue with him as if you were equals."
"And I guess you really were. And I just loved that."