Remembering Don Rickles

Posted by: Erin Ward in Notable Deaths | July 12, 2021

Don RicklesComedian, ActorMay 8 1926 – April 6 2017

Legendary comedian and actor Don Rickles passed away at the age of 90 from kidney failure according to multiple sources.

He was best known for his insult style of stand-up comedy.  His comedy attracted many hecklers which he would then use to fill his act.  He often referred to hecklers as “Hockey Pucks” or “Dummy”.  He was given the nickname “Mr. Warmth” as a result of his comedy.

Rickles was a frequent guest at celebrity roasts and considered an honorary member of the “Rat Pack”.  Rickles began his comedy in the 1950’s but got his big break after appearing on the “Tonight Show with Johnny Carson”.  This led to him headlining shows in Las Vegas, NV.

As his comedy career took off, Rickles transitioned into television and film.  He appeared in both serious and comedic roles.  Some of his most notable work includes: “Run Silent, Run Deep”, “Beach Party”, “Kelly’s Heroes”, “The Don Rickles Show”, and the “Toy Story” film franchise.

Rickles was a frequent guest on late night talk shows and worked well into his 80’s.  He preferred the energy of working opposed to a relaxed retirement.  Rickles was honored with numerous awards including: a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and a Johnny Carson Award for Comedic Excellence.

Rickles death was preceded by his son Larry.  He leaves behind a wife, daughter, and two grandchildren. Countless celebrities have expressed their condolences since his death was announced:

Tom Hanks: “A God died today. Don Rickles, we did not want to ever lose you. Never. Hanx.”Jim Carrey: “Don once begged me for a couple of bucks then told me to ttwist myself in to a pretzel. Ego slayer! Comic Everest! Spank you Mr. Rickles.”

Bob Saget: “My friend, my dad, the funniest biggest hearted of them all.  A beautiful husband and father. My heart is broken. Rest In Peace. Don Rickles.”

Patton Oswalt: “Is he laughing? Is MLK laughing? But folks…Oh nice, Dean Martin’s here. Don’t worry Dean, Jerry’s right behind me. #RicklesInHeaven”



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