Larry Hagman, who's well known for his antagonist role as a cunning oil baron J.R. Ewing in 1980s classic soap opera "Dallas" that continued in a 2012 version, has passed away in a Dallas hospital after losing his courageous battle against cancer. He was 81.
"Larry was back in his beloved Dallas, re-enacting the iconic role he loved most," the family said in a statement. "Larry's family and close friends had joined him in Dallas for the Thanksgiving holiday. When he passed, he was surrounded by loved ones. It was a peaceful passing, just as he had wished for. The family requests privacy at this time."
Larry's co-stars Linda Gray and Patrick Duffy, who played his on-screen wife Sue Ellen and on-screen brother Bobby respectively, were at his bedside when he passed away. "Linda was with him," confirmed her agent Jeffrey Lane. "They had been friends for 35 years and they had worked together for many years so obviously it is devastating. She called and told me. She sounded very sad."
Releasing her own statement, Linda said as quoted by The Sun, "Larry Hagman was my best friend for 35 years. He was the Pied Piper of life and brought joy to everyone who knew him. He was creative, generous, funny, loving and talented. I'll miss him enormously."
Larry, who used to be a heavy smoker when he was younger, was battling alcohol problems during his life. He underwent a life-saving liver transplant in 1995 and revealed that he had stage 2 throat cancer in 2011.
He is survived by his wife Maj Axelsson who was diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease in 2008, and two grown-up children, daughter Kristina Hagman and son Preston Hagman, and five granddaughters.