Actor Robert Guillaume, best known for his title role on the 1990s series Benson, died at the age of 89 at his L.A. home on Tuesday, October 24.
Guillaume’s wife, Donna, confirmed her husband’s passing to CNN on Tuesday. “He kinda went the way everyone wishes they could, surrounded by love and in his sleep,” she said before noting that the Emmy-winner had battled prostate cancer for several years. “He was a good father and a good husband. He was a great, great person.”
The St. Louis native, who voiced Rafiki in The Lion King, is survived by the two sons he shares with Donna and a daughter from his first marriage to Marlene Williams. According to CNN, the former Broadway performer spent quality time with all of his children in his final weeks.
Throughout his career, the Tony-nomonated actor appeared on numerous popular sitcoms, including Saved by the Bell: The College Years and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
Celebrities have taken to Twitter to pay tribute to the late Soap actor. “R.I.P. Robert Guillaume. Saw him play Nathan Detroit on Broadway in 1976,” Scandal star and Guillaume’s former Sports Night colleague, Josh Malina, posted on Tuesday. “Made me want to be an actor. It was a thrill to work w him on SN.”
Added The Good Wife alum Josh Charles: “Robert Guillaume radiated such warmth, light, dignity, and above all, class. That smile and laugh touched us all. RIP to the best boss ever.”