Legendary entertainer Des O’Connor dies aged 88 after a fall at home

Picture: ITV

Legendary all-round entertainer Des O’Connor has died after a fall at his home. He was aged 88.

O’Connor was not only a comedian – often the fall guy to double act Morecambe and Wise – but also a chart-topping singer with “I Pretend”.

He had four top ten singles and sold more than 10 million records.

He had his own variety show and compered acts in some of the world’s biggest venues.

His agent Pat Lake-Smith said in a statement:

“It is with great sorrow that I confirm that Des O’Connor passed away yesterday.

“He had been admitted to hospital just over a week ago, following a fall at his home in Buckinghamshire.

“He was recovering well and had been in great spirits, visited by his family – in accordance with hospital lockdown regulations – and looking forward to going home.

“Unfortunately yesterday evening his condition suddenly deteriorated and he drifted peacefully away in his sleep.

“Des, who was 88, was so well loved by absolutely everyone. He was a joy to work with – he was talented, fun, positive, enthusiastic, kind and a total professional.

He loved life and considered enthusiasm almost as important as oxygen.

“He adored his family – they were everything to him.

“He is survived by his wife Jodie, their son Adam and his four daughters, Karin, TJ, Samantha and Kristina.

“Jodie’s world is shattered, she and Adam and Des’s daughters are hurting more than you could possibly imagine.

“Des was the ultimate entertainer.

“He loved being on stage – entertaining a live audience.

“He always said the sound of laughter was like the sound of heavenly music.

“He had a fabulous international TV career, presenting his own prime-time TV shows for over 45 years.

“On stage he starred at almost every leading venue throughout the world.”



About the Author

Philip Braund spent 16 years at the Daily Mirror as a reporter and news editor before moving to ITV. He was the series producer of the ground-breaking investigation programme The Cook Report, Managing Editor at ITV's Millbank Studios, and Head of News at ITV Central. He has won national and regional Royal Television Society awards for documentaries.

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