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Legendary Comedian and actor Paul Mooney dead at 79 after suffering heart attack

The comedian died at 5:30 a.m. today at his home in Oakland, California.

Paul Mooney Dies: Trailblazing Comedian, Writing Partner Of Richard Pryor Was 79

Paul Mooney, the longtime stand-up comedian and actor whose movie roles included portraying singer Sam Cooke in the Oscar-winning drama “The Buddy Holly Story,” has died on Wednesday, (May 19).

The comedian—known for his work as a writer for Richard Pryor, roles in films like Bamboozled and appearances as an actor and writer on Chappelle’s Show—suffered a heart attack at his home in Oakland, as first shared by journalist Roland Martin on Twitter. Mooney’s cousin, Rudy Ealy, called Martin to notify him of his passing.

His death was announced by his cousin Rudy Ealy to CNN contributor Roland Martin, who said Mooney died at his home in Oakland.

As an actor, Mooney portrayed singer Sam Cooke in 1978’s The Buddy Holly Story, played Junebug in Spike Lee’s 2000 Bamboozled, made numerous guest appearances on such TV series and specials as The Richard Pryor Show, The Larry Sanders Show, and, more recently, Chappelle’s Show, Real Husbands of Hollywood, and, in 2004, his own comedy series Judge Mooney.

Mooney’s Twitter account shared a message thanking his fans for their longtime support shortly after the news broke.

“Thank you all from the bottom of all of our hearts,” the tweet read. “you’re all are the best!…… Mooney World .. The Godfather of Comedy – ONE MOON MANY STARS! .. To all in love with this great man.. many thanks.”

Paul had been “suffering with dementia for some time,” Martin shared, adding that paramedics attempted to save him following his heart attack on Wednesday morning.

Social Media Remembering Paul Mooney, Rest In Peace.


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