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RIP: ‘Friends’ star James Michael Tyler (Gunther) dies


Oct 25, 2021

Actor, James Michael Tyler, who played the role of Gunther in the sitcom, Friends, has died at the age of 59 years.  

His manager released a statement that said he passed away in his Los Angeles home on Sunday morning.  

The actor was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer in 2018 which later spread to his bones.  

“If you met him once you made a friend for life. [He] is survived by his wife, Jennifer Carno, the love of his life.”  

“Wanting to help as many people as possible, he bravely shared his story and became a campaigner for those with a prostate to get a… blood test as early as 40-years-old.”  

Warner Bros. Television mourns the loss of James Michael Tyler, a beloved actor and integral part of our FRIENDS family. Our thoughts are with his family, friends, colleagues and fans. pic.twitter.com/9coGnT5BHz

— FRIENDS (@FriendsTV) October 24, 2021


Viewers of the show will remember him for his role as Gunther, a waiter, and manager in New York’s Central Perk coffee house.  

Though he didn’t have as much screen time as the rest of the cast, Gunther will be remembered for his long-term crush on Jennifer Aniston’s character, Rachel Green throughout the show, from 1994 to 2004.  

Tyler never showed up for the Friends reunion earlier this year and only appeared via Zoom because of his illness.  

“I wanted to be a part of that, and initially I was going to be on the stage, at least, with them, and be able to take part in all the festivities.”  

“It was bittersweet, honestly.”

“It was my decision not to be a part of that physically and make an appearance on Zoom, basically, because I didn’t wanna bring a downer on it, you know?”

“I didn’t want to be like, ‘Oh, and by the way, Gunther has cancer.’” 

James Michael Tyler as Gunther in Friends was truly an integral part of the show.

Rest in peace pic.twitter.com/apkgofj1Ed

— E (@E80453849) October 24, 2021

Rest In Peace Gunther pic.twitter.com/u1pMrofqoR

— anne rodriguez (@rodriguezzanne) October 24, 2021

You will be missed pic.twitter.com/14w4eW2qpl

— Âbdou | (@Abdou_haceini) October 24, 2021

Also read: Friends Reunion: Who’s making a return – and who isn’t

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