Paul O’Grady, the presenter, and comedian has died “unexpectedly but peaceful” aged 67. We were extremely saddened to hear the news having grown up with the loving and warm character on our screens.
O’Grady passed away Tuesday evening. His husband Andre Portasio announced the devastating news in a statement.
O’grady rose to fame in the 90s with his iconic drag queen, Lily Savage. He went on to present the BBC One game show Blankety Blank and TV dating show Blind Date along with hosting his own talk shows and radio shows.
He was a lover of dogs, and brought his love of dogs to the screen.
Mr Portasio said: “It is with great sadness that I inform you that Paul has passed away unexpectedly but peacefully yesterday evening.”
“He will be greatly missed by his loved ones, friends, family, animals and all those who enjoyed his humour, wit and compassion. know that he would want me to thank you for all the love you have shown him over the years.”
Paul had recently featured in a touring play of the musical Annie playing Miss Hannigan. Tributes to the TV presenter, comedian and all-round icon from across social media.
Battersea Dog and cats home wrote on Twitter: “We’re deeply saddened to learn that our wonderful, kind friend and beloved Ambassador Paul O’Grady MBE has passed away.
“He will be so dearly missed by all of us at Battersea. Our love and thoughts go out to all of Paul’s family and friends at this difficult time.”
The Royal Family official Twitter account also shared the news writing: “Deeply saddened to hear of the death of Paul O’Grady, who worked closely with Her Majesty in support of @Battersea_, providing lots of laughter and many waggy-tailed memories.”
Comedian Joy Lycett also shared.a message saying: “I’m sad about Paul O’Grady. I hoped I might meet him one day to tell him what an inspiration he was to me: how I loved gloriously loose & effortless his shows were, how he proved you could be political in a light ent space and that you could do all this & be really, really funny.”
Amanda Holden described friend O’Grady as “brilliantly opinionated, searingly sharp and very funny”.
Carol Vorderman wrote: “Already giving them raucous, ripping up the rulebook, mischief making, calling it out, loving hell in heaven Paul, what are we meant to do without you?”
Another Twitter paid an amazing tribute with an anecdote about Paul writing: “What a fucking life led. Truly. Back when the Met stormed into the RVT for it being a gay bar, all wearing rubber gloves to “protect” themselves during the HIV crisis, Paul O’Grady was on stage as Lily and immediately quipped “Looks like we have help with the washing up!” Iconic.
This is a breaking news story, more to follow…