Sad news from the world of comedy today, as beloved entertainer Tim Conway has passed away at the age of 85.
The actor's passing was confirmed moments ago by a statement issued to People magazine by his representatives:
According to the statement, Conway passed away at home following complications from Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus.
Best known for his work on The Carol Burnett Show, Conway originated such characters as the Oldest Man and Mr. Tudball, and he frequently stole scenes with his signature ad-libbing.
“I’m heartbroken,” Burnett told the press today.
“He was one in a million, not only as a brilliant comedian but as a loving human being," she added.
"I cherish the times we had together both on the screen and off. He’ll be in my heart forever.”
Though perhaps not a household name to younger television fans, fellow comics consider Conway to be among the most trailblazing figures in the world of sketch comedy.
“My favorite comedian, of course, is Tim Conway,” Burnett said in a 2009 interview.
“He has a way about him—being that belly-laugh kind of funny, and he has the improvisational skills too," she added.
"I’ve never seen anybody better. I remember Johnny Carson saying that Tim made him laugh more than anybody.”
Forever humble about his own achievements, Conway typically spoke of himself as a class clown who got lucky enough to do what he loves for a living.
“I had no professional training," he once told an interviewer.
"I had a sense of humor and had been in front of a microphone,”
In addition to his work on Burnett's show, Conway created the popular slapstick character Dorf and voiced Barnacle Boy on SpongeBob SquarePants.
He continued to appear on television as recently as 2008 with a memorable cameo oin 30 Rock.
He is survived by his wife, six children, and one stepchild.
Our thoughts go out to Conway's loved ones at this difficult time.