No Script Javascript is disabled. Please enable it for better working experience.
Advertisement
Sunday 23 June, 2024
Advertisement

Paul O’Grady Dead at 67, Cause of Death

BY Sharmeen Hussain Mar 29, 2023. 07:59 pm UPDATED: Mar 29, 2023. 07:59 pm

Advertisement

Paul O’Grady, a presenter and comic, died at the age of 67.

He passed “unexpectedly but peacefully” on Tuesday evening, according to his spouse, Andre Portasio.

O’Grady came to prominence in the 1990s as the drag diva Lily Savage, later hosting the BBC One game show Blankety Blank and other light entertainment shows.

Later in his career, he moved on to anchor a number of chat programs, bringing his passion of dogs to the big screen.

“It is with great sadness that I inform you that Paul has passed away unexpectedly but peacefully yesterday evening,” Mr Portasio said.

Advertisement

“He will be greatly missed by his loved ones, friends, family, animals and all those who enjoyed his humour, wit and compassion.

“I know that he would want me to thank you for all the love you have shown him over the years.”

According to a statement issued on Camilla’s behalf, she was “deeply saddened to learn of the death of Paul O’Grady, with whom she worked closely to support the work of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home and whose warm heart and infectious humour lit up the lives of so many.”

According to a spokesperson, she will “share her condolences with Paul’s family privately in due course.”

He’d just returned from a tour as Miss Hannigan in the show Annie.

Advertisement

After returning from a performance in Newcastle a few weeks ago, O’Grady wrote on Instagram that he was “thoroughly enjoying” portraying the part again after so long, “especially with such a truly amazing and lovely cast.”

The broadcaster quit his weekly BBC Radio 2 programme in August 2022, stating that he was dissatisfied with sharing his Sunday afternoon slot.

He was scheduled to appear on Boom Radio for Easter Sunday in less than two weeks.

Malcolm Prince, O’Grady’s long-time radio director, said he paid the celebrity a call at his residence on Tuesday afternoon, describing him as “laughing, smiling, and full of life.”

“He was so proud of Annie, so happy to be back on Boom Radio, and he was looking forward to so many new projects,” Mr Prince said on Twitter.

“And now he’s gone. I can’t believe it. We have lost a unique talent – and I’ve lost a dear friend.”

Advertisement

Speaking on her BBC Radio 2 breakfast show on Wednesday, Zoe Ball said: “We’re all heavy of heart here this morning at the news of our dear friend Paul O’Grady. I know he was so loved by the Radio 2 listeners and all of us here.”

Lorraine Kelly of ITV characterised O’Grady as a “really special man.” “What terrible news. “Paul O’Grady is funny, fearless, brave, kind, and wise,” she wrote on Twitter. “You will be greatly missed.”

TV host Amanda Holden described O’Grady as “strong, funny, opinionated, no-nonsense, brilliant” on Instagram, while radio host Simon Mayo described him as “a lovely man, always funny and a radio natural.”

Aled Jones, a singer and TV personality, characterised O’Grady as “a lovely lovely person,” while Vernon Kay described him as “one of the nicest and kindest people I’ve ever met, always a joy to be around and obviously, so much fun.”

Danny Beard, the winner of Ru Paul’s Drag Race UK’s fourth season, told BBC Breakfast O’Grady that he was “the most important person in British culture for drag.”

Peter Tatchell, an activist, characterised the presenter as a “much-admired campaigner for LGBT+ equality and animal rights.”

Carol Vorderman, a TV presenter, said on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “He just fizzed, he was one of those people who made you feel like every part of you was alive.”

Advertisement

O’Grady was born in Birkenhead, Merseyside, to a mother whose given name was Savage, which is thought to have influenced his renowned drag performance.

In the 1970s, he started singing as Lily Savage. Later, the drag performer established a reputation for herself by speaking out about LGBT problems in a solo performance that played for eight years at London’s Royal Vauxhall Tavern.

Later, he presented the BBC talk programme The Lily Savage programme for a brief period in 1997 before moving on to host a resurrected version of the gameshow Blankety Blank, which aired until 2002.

Advertisement

Related Articles

Rose-Marie Dead at 68, Cause of Death
Entertainment

Rose-Marie Dead at 68, Cause of Death

HISTORICAL Rose-Marie, an Irish singer, tragically her away unexpectedly in Blackpool, shocking...

Kenneth Mitchell dies aged 49, Cause of Death
Entertainment

Kenneth Mitchell dies aged 49, Cause of Death

A statement from his loved ones on X read: "With heavy hearts...

Who is Amanda Dubin? Will Reeve’s girlfriend
Entertainment

Who is Amanda Dubin? Will Reeve’s girlfriend

Early in 2024, news anchor Will Reeve ignited engagement rumors with his...

Kamylla Cristina Rosa de Oliveira dead, Cause of Death
Entertainment

Kamylla Cristina Rosa de Oliveira dead, Cause of Death

Actress and model who was repairing her automobile on a hard shoulder...

Who is Chelsea Blackwell? Love is Blind contestant
Entertainment

Who is Chelsea Blackwell? Love is Blind contestant

CHELSEA Blackwell is one of the hopefuls for the sixth season of...

Who is Sian Welby? Everything you need to know about the new ITV This Morning presenter
Entertainment

Who is Sian Welby? Everything you need to know about the new ITV This Morning presenter

SIAN Welby's career skyrocketed after it was reported she had been hired...

Advertisement

Latest News

Farah El Kadhi Dead at 36, Cause of Death
Viral

Farah El Kadhi Dead at 36, Cause of Death

Local reports state that a well-known beauty influencer from Tunisia passed away...

Morgan Metzer beaten, bound, raped and nearly choked to death
US

Morgan Metzer beaten, bound, raped and nearly choked to death

A mother of two who was assaulted, restrained, sexually assaulted, and on...

James Everett du Bois, US Army vet swept out to sea
US

James Everett du Bois, US Army vet swept out to sea

Pictured is a US army veteran who was washed out to sea...

Rose-Marie Dead at 68, Cause of Death
Entertainment

Rose-Marie Dead at 68, Cause of Death

HISTORICAL Rose-Marie, an Irish singer, tragically her away unexpectedly in Blackpool, shocking...

Advertisement