Rest in peace, Chuy Bravo.
The Mexican-American actor, best known as Chelsea Handler‘s sidekick on “Chelsea Lately”, died suddenly in Mexico City on Saturday night, ET confirms. He was 63. No other details are available at this time.
Bravo’s death comes just over a week after Handler paid tribute to him in a touching post in honour of his birthday on Dec. 7.
“Happy Birthday to my OG Nugget @chuybravo. I love this picture because–not only does it look like Chuy just launched out of my peekachu, I look like a member of ZZ Top. Happy birthday Chuy, and thank you for 8 years of heavy petting,” she wrote.
Shortly after the news of Bravo’s death broke, Handler posted a tribute to him on Instagram.
“I loved this nugget in a big way, and I took great pleasure in how many people loved him as much as I did and do. @chuybravo gave us so much laughter and I’ll never forget the sound of his laughter coming from his office into mine. Or his ‘business calls’ with his “business manager,” or his shoe rack with all his children-sized shoes,” she wrote alongside a collection of pictures.
“I’ll never forget him coming to Christmas with my family one year in the Florida keys, and when my niece who was 5 or 6 at the time—saw him, she ran in the other direction saying she was scared. My sister and I were mortified and were apologizing to Chuy, who told us,’it’s ok, lots of little kids get scared when they see big kids coming their way.’ I love you, Chuy!”
Bravo was born Jesus Melgoza”in Tangancicuaro, Michoacán, Mexico, in 1956. He was the youngest of seven children, and immigrated to the United States at age 15, moving to the San Fernando Valley.
He began acting in the early 1990s, and had credits in films like “The Honeymooners” in 2005 and “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” in 2007. It was his appearance as Handler’s sidekick on “Chelsea Lately”, however, that made him a star. He appeared on the E! late night talk show from 2007 to 2014.
Handler praised Bravo in a 2007 interview with ET. “The worst part of doing the show is that I have to work five days a week, which I’m not accustomed to. I’m a stand-up comedian, so I usually would work twice a week and it’s for like, an hour. The best part is that Chuy and I get to spend every day together,” she shared. “I love him!”
Bravo revealed in a 2012 interview with Latina that he survived prostate cancer, which was treated quickly after it was diagnosed. He also shared that he was a recovering alcoholic and was nearly homeless at one point in his life. “I have been through a lot in my life, but I’ve overcome my struggles and now I’m finally living my life,” he said at the time.
See more on stars we’ve lost recently in the video below.