Actor, writer, and director Harold Ramis died today from complications brought on by an autoimmune disease. He was 69. Ramis is most famously known for his writing credits such as “Stripes”, “Ghostbusters,” which he also starred in, and also starred in”Ghostbusters II”. He most recently had a role in Judd Apatow’s “Knocked Up. and “As Good As It Gets”. His directorial stint includes the likes of “National Lampoon’s Animal House”, “Caddyshack”, and “National Lampoon’s Vacation”. Possibly his most famous role to date was Egon Spangler, a quasi nerdy scientist that acted as the voice of reason in the “Ghostbuster” franchise.
Ramis first started his comedic career with the prestigious Second City Theater in Chicago alongside Jim Belushi, who starred in “Animal House.” He was the first head writer of Second City’s television series “Second City Television” and he most recently directed episodes of “The Office” on NBC. Many comics credit Ramis for their success, such as comedic writers Judd Apatow, Adam Sandler, Jake Kasdan, and Jay Roach. Ramis developed health issues in May of 2010 with an infection that led him to physical therapy in order to learn to walk again. Ramis leaves behind a wife, two sons, and one daughter.
Other notable actors and comics that have passed thus far in the year 2014 include Shirley Temple, Sid Ceaser, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, John Henson, son of famed Muppets creator Jim Henson, and James Avery, the beloved Uncle Phil on “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Avery died due to complications from open heart surgery News Years Day. He was 65.