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James Michael Tyler, known for playing Gunther on 'Friends,' dies at 59

Tyler confirmed earlier this year that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

LOS ANGELES — James Michael Tyler, the actor most well known for playing Gunther on the NBC hit-show Friends, has died at the age of 59. 

The official Friends Twitter account confirmed the news Sunday evening after TMZ first reported that Tyler had died in his Los Angeles home after a three-year battle with prostate cancer. 

Earlier this year, Tyler discussed his diagnosis – which he received in 2018 – during an interview with TODAY's Craig Melvin.

"I was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer, which had spread to my bones," Tyler told Melvin. "I've been dealing with that diagnosis for almost the past three years... It's stage 4 (now). Late stage cancer. So eventually, you know, it's gonna probably get me."

"I was 56 years old at the time, and they screen for PSA, which is prostate-specific antigen," Tyler said in the TODAY interview earlier this year. "That came back at an extraordinarily high number ... So I knew immediately when I went online and I saw the results of my blood test and blood work that there was obviously something quite wrong there. Nearly immediately, my doctor called me and said 'Hey, I need you to come in tomorrow because I suspect that you may have quite a serious problem with your prostate.'"

In a video posted by the Prostate Cancer Foundation in June, the Friends actor pleaded with men to get their prostate checked, and advocated for a prostate static antigen-- a blood test that helps to detect cancer or abnormalities with the body part. 

"If there's one piece of advice that I could give to men out there to avoid where I am today, specifically, is get tested," Tyler said in the video. 

Late Sunday evening, the actor's Friends costars paid tribute to him with messages on social media remembering his life and legacy. 

"Friends would not have been the same without you. Thank you for the laughter you brought to the show and to all of our lives. You will be so missed," wrote Jennifer Aniston, sharing a scene of their characters together.

"The size of gratitude you brought into the room and showed every day on set is the size of the gratitude I hold for having known you. Rest In peace James," Courteney Cox, who played Monica Geller, said in a post on Instagram

The actor was 59 years old. 


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