James Michael Tyler, who played Gunther in 90s favorite sitcom Friends, passed away due to cancer, Warner Bros. Television said on Sunday (Monday in Manila time). He was 59.
Tyler played the manager of the six friends' coffee shop hangout, Central Perk, and long-time admirer of Rachel Green, played by Jennifer Aniston.
"Warner Bros. Television mourns the loss of James Michael Tyler, a beloved actor and integral part of our FRIENDS family," the official FRIENDS pages said on social media.
Tyler joined the cast and crew for a reunion special last May via Zoom. He told the "Today" show in June, he said he was unable to attend the reunion in person because he was battling late-stage prostate cancer which spread to his bones. He was diagnosed with the disease during a routine check-up in September 2018.
"I would've gone in earlier and you know, it would've been caught earlier," he said.
He urged viewers to ask their doctors for a prostate specific antigen (PSA) test at their next check-up. "Next time, you go in for just a basic exam or your yearly check-up. Please ask your doctor for a PSA test. Caught early, 99% treatable," he said.
"My goal this past year was to see my 59th birthday. I did that. My goal now is to save at least one life."