'Frasier' star John Mahoney dies aged 77 as tributes pour in

John Mahoney played Martin Crane on the show. Source: Getty.

Actor John Mahoney, best known for playing the father on Frasier, has died aged 77.

The much-loved star played Martin Crane alongside his on-screen sons Kelsey Grammar, who played Frasier, and David Hyde Pierce, who played Niles. He passed away on Sunday in a Chicago hospice facility, his publicist confirmed to the Mail Online.

Mahoney starred in the hit show for 11 seasons, from 1993 to 2004. He received a SAG Award for his performance, and was also nominated for two Emmy Awards and two Golden Globes.

Tributes have been pouring in for the actor on social media, with one fan writing: “I never loved John Mahoney more than when he was annoying his TV sons with dated Austin Powers references.” Meanwhile, actor and producer Dean Cain added: “Sorry to hear of the passing of #JohnMahoney. Such a talented actor and wonderful man. RIP, my friend.”

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Meanwhile host Peter Sagal wrote: “A gentleman, an actor’s actor, a Chicagoan to his British born bones. One of the greatest joys in my life was being in a play with him (on tape) last year.”

As well as his success on Frasier, Mahoney starred in a number of films and also worked as a voice actor, and performed on Broadway and in Chicago theatre. Top hits included The American President, Say Anything… and Eight Men Out. 

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More recently, he starred as Roy in six episodes of TV Land’s Hot In Cleveland, and had a popular role as Andrew Del Mar in Foyle’s War in 2015.

Mahoney at the 61st Annual Tony Awards in 2007. Source Getty.

Mahoney rarely spoke about his private life, but was godfather to Frasier co-star Jane Leeves’ son Finn. He previously revealed he had enjoyed a few relationships in the past, but he’s never thought to have married.

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The star is thought to have served in the army for three years, before becoming a citizen, He reportedly moved to the US after World War II and once told the Chicago Tribune: “It was so bleak and dark in England” and “so sunny” in America.

A cause of death has so far not been confirmed.

What are your memories of the actor’s work? Did you enjoy Frasier?

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