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Frasier star John Mahoney dies at 77

Sad news to reports today as it has been announced that John Mahoney, best known for playing the cantankerous yet lovable Martin Crane on Frasier, has passed away at the age of 77. His publicist, Paul Martino, confirmed that the actor died on Sunday while in hospice care.

John Mahoney was born in Blackpool, England on June 20, 1940 as one of eight children. After World War II came to an end, the family moved back to their original home city of Manchester and Mahoney later discovered his love of acting, but he wouldn't pursue it as a serious career until much later in his life. With the help of his older sister, Vera, a war bride living in Illinois, Mahoney moved to the United States and began studying at Quincy University before joining the U.S. Army and receiving his citizenship in 1959. After spending time teaching English at Western Illinois University and serving as the editor of a medical journal, Mahoney began feeling dissatisfied with his career and started taking acting classes, and, upon the encouragement of John Malkovich, later joined Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre. "The theater is my brothers, my sisters, my father, my mother, my wife," Mahoney said in an interview with the Chicago Tribune. "It is everything to me. And Steppenwolf is such a joy. We (the ensemble members) would do anything for one another. There is no selfishness here."

Although his love for the theatre always remained, John Mahoney was featured in many movies, including TIN MAN, MOONSTRUCK, SAY ANYTHING, BARTON FINK, THE HUDSUCKER PROXY, THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT, PRIMAL FEAR, ANTZ, THE IRON GIANT, ATLANTIS: THE LOST EMPIRE, and DAN IN REAL LIFE, as well as TV series such as Cheers, 3rd Rock from the Sun, Becker, ER, Hot in Cleveland, and In Treatment. Of course, most know John Mahoney from his role of Martin Crane, father to Kelsey Grammer and David Hyde Pierce's characters. The actor appeared in all 11 seasons of the series, garnering many accolades along the way, including a SAG Award as well as two Emmy and two Golden Globe nominations for his portrayal. Mahoney also made a memorable guest-spot on The Simpsons for a mini-Frasier reunion when he voiced Dr. Robert Terwilliger, Sr., the father of Sideshow Bob and Cecil Terwilliger, who were voiced by Kelsey Grammer and David Hyde Pierce respectively.

Rest in piece, Mr. Mahoney. You will certainly be missed.

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