According to a report from TMZ.com, John Witherspoon had been fighting several heart-related problems when he finally succumbed to the heart attack that killed him claims his death certificate. The outlet got their hands on the document which they say proves the actor was dealing with coronary artery disease.
Moreover, Witherspoon was struggling with hypertension as well, although it was never listed as the impetus for the heart-attack. It was reported by multiple outlets that John died on the 29th of October at his home in California.
The official death certificate claims the actor passed away at 5:30 pm at his home in Sherman Oaks. TMZ also obtained an audio recording from a dispatcher asking for help for an unconscious patient, claiming he was going into cardiac arrest.
In the same audio recording, the dispatcher claimed the man had died and then canceled the rescue. Witherspoon’s family confirmed the news of his death by tweeting that John passed earlier this year. They described John as a fixture in the entertainment scene, as well as a father figure to all those he worked with.
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It is with deep sadness we have to write this, but our husband & father John Witherspoon has passed away. He was a Legend in the entertainment industry, and a father figure to all who watched him over the years. We love you “POPS” always & forever. – The Witherspoon Family
Fans of Witherspoon know that he worked in a plethora of movies and television productions, including as Willie Jones, the father of Ice Cube’s character in the film, Friday, and all of its sequels. The actor was 77-years-old.
According to CBS News, John was born in 1942 in the city of Detroit, Michigan, before going on to launch his career in the entertainment business in the late 1970s. It was in the 1980 movie, The Jazz Singer, where he made his first appearence.
Additionally, John has appeared in other cult classics such as Vampire In Brooklyn beside Eddie Murphy and also in The Boondocks, The Tracy Morgan Show, as well as Black Jesus. Perhaps his most famous work is for the aforementioned cult TV show, The Boondocks.
John had a wife, Angela, as well as two sons named JD and Alexander. JD took to his Twitter to reminisce on his father’s legacy as well as his time growing up with John as his father.