Veteran stand-up comic Patrice O’Neal, who gained a wider following through TV and radio and helped roast Charlie Sheen, died Tuesday from complications of a stroke he suffered last month. He was 41.
O’Neal’s manager, Jonathan Brandstein, said he died in a New York-area hospital.
“Many of us have lost a close and loved friend; all of us have lost a true comic genius,” Brandstein said in a statement.
O’Neal appeared on Conan O’Brien’s and David Letterman’s TV shows and was a frequent guest on the “Opie & Anthony” radio show on Sirius XM. His performance was a highlight of the Comedy Central roast of Sheen, who had been fired from the hit CBS comedy “Two and a Half Men,” in September.
Sheen said in a tweet Tuesday, “The entertainment world as well as the world at large lost a brilliant man.”
He added, “Patrice had that rare ‘light’ around him and inside of him. I only knew him for the few days leading up the Roast. Yet I will forever be inspired by his nobility, his grace and his epic talent. My tears today are for the tremendous loss to his true friends and loving family.”
Other entertainers also mourned O’Neal on Twitter.
“RIP Patrice O’Neal. You made us laugh til we cried,” comedian Sarah Silverman said.
Actor Jay Mohr said, “Just heard. Goodnight brother. Damn. Just ridiculous. Terrible. Beyond sad.”
O’Neal had half-hour specials on Showtime and HBO and was the host of “Web Junk 20” on VH1. He appeared in numerous television shows including “Arrested Development,” ”Chappelle’s Show” and “The Office.”
O’Neal suffered a stroke on Oct. 19 after battling diabetes. He is survived by his wife, Vondecarlo, his stepdaughter, Aymilyon, his sister, Zinder, and his mother, Georgia.
Brandstein, his manager, said the family wished to thank “all of the fans and friends who have expressed an outpouring of love and support for Patrice these past weeks.”