Few hours after his passing at a Los Angeles hospital on new year’s eve, heaps of tributes poured in from friends and well-wishers shocked by his death.
Actor James Avery, well-known by many TV fans as “Uncle Phil” on the sitcom “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” which has been shown on some Ghanaian television stations, passed away on into glory at the age of 65 due to complications experienced from an open heart surgery.
According to Jerry L. Barrow, Senior Editor of the rickeysmileymorningshow.com, it did not take long for those who knew and worked with Avery to express their condolences on Twitter.
One of the first to confirm Avery’s death, actor Alfonso Robeiro, who played his son Carlton on the programme, wrote on Twitter; “I’m deeply saddened to say that James Avery has passed away. He was a second father to me. I will miss him greatly.”
Tatyana Ali, who played his youngest daughter Ashley, added, “James was my teacher my protector & the most magnificent actor. We’re feeling his loss very deeply. He’ll always be a part of me.”
But although he has not as yet made a public statement, reports say that Will Smith, a former member of the sitcom’s cast, was “devastated” by the news.
Other “Fresh Prince” cast members and peers of Avery have since his death been sending their thoughts and memories of him.
Mr Vinyl Destination also known as DJ Jazzy Jeff, wrote, “RIP James Avery…Thank U for the talks, travel tips and the jazz cd’s. A great Friend and Even Better Person…You will be Missed!!”
CedEntertainer said, “Just saw the news James Avery passed. He was a talented and kind gentleman. Rest in peace Uncle Phil.”
Sinbad also wrote “My condolences go out to the family of actor James Avery from fresh prince who passed away last night. Will miss you big guy.”
Niecy Nash twittered, “Rest in Peace. Actor James Avery. A true gift to the entertainment industry. Loved as Uncle Phil.”