Gone but not forgotten. Comedian Charlie Murphy died at the age of 57 on Wednesday, April 12, and his brother Eddie Murphy and their family released a statement mourning their loss shortly afterward.
“Our hearts are heavy with the loss today of our son, brother, father, uncle and friend Charlie,” the statement reads. “Charlie filled our family with love and laughter, and there won’t be a day that goes by that his presence will not be missed. Thank you for the outpouring of condolences and prayers. We respectfully ask for privacy during this time of great loss for all of us.”
As previously reported, Charlie had been struggling with leukemia and undergoing chemotherapy for his condition in the days leading up to his death. According to TMZ, the comedian’s family would call him frequently to check in on him, to the point that he would joke that they were calling too much.
In an interview with Variety last September, Eddie opened up about how his big brother kick-started his comedy career.
“Charlie is actually my best impression,” the former Saturday Night Live great said at the time. “I’ve been doing him since I was two or three. He was my first impression. I wish he would get famous because people could see this great impression that I do.”
Charlie and Eddie, 56, have collaborated in the past; Charlie cowrote some of Eddie’s films, including Norbit and Vampire in Brooklyn. Charlie also starred in flicks like Are We There Yet?, The Boondocks and Black Jesus.
Prior to his death, Charlie had recently toured with Cedric the Entertainer, Eddie Griffin, George Lopez and D.L. Hughley on The Comedy Get Down. He was also known for costarring with Dave Chappelle on some of the Chappelle Show’s most well-known skits, including ones about Rick James and Prince.
“After every gig, he rushed home to be with his kids,” Hughley, 54, wrote in a tweet Wednesday. “He died with gigs on the books. #RIP #mybrotha #charliemurphy #CGD.”
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