Don Rickles, the iconic spitfire insult comic, died at his home in Los Angeles Thursday, according to The Hollywood Reporter. He was 90. The cause of death was kidney failure, according to Rickles' publicist.
On Thursday, tributes from countless comics and actors began flooding in. "He was called 'The Merchant of Venom,' but in truth, he was one of the kindest, caring and most sensitive human beings we have ever known," comic and Rickles' longtime friend Bob Newhart said in a statement. "We are devastated and our world will never be the same. We were totally unprepared for this."
"Rickles was never politically correct, and he would never apologize for any of it," Gilbert Gottfried tells Rolling Stone. "He was totally unapologetic about his comedy. I totally admired that and looked at him as a hero in that way. His legacy to me will always be that he didn't care who he insulted; he didn't care who he offended. If it got a laugh, that was great."
"Don coming on our show was always a highlight for me," David Letterman said in a statement. "Just endless mischief and nonsense, and a guy who would make the audience go completely crazy. Such a professional, such a gentleman. I already miss him." "90 years with Don Rickles weren't enough," Jimmy Kimmel tweeted. "One of the sweetest and most lovely people I had the pleasure of knowing. We miss you already."
He was a good one. R.I.P.