Last month, the indelible actor Sherman Hemsley (pictured) died at his home in El Paso, Texas. Initially, Hemsley’s passing was thought to be due to “natural causes,” but now, according to the El Paso Texas Medical Examiner, it is known that Hemsley actually died from lung cancer, reports TMZ.
On Hemsley’s Postmortem Report, it is said that Hemsley’s cause of death was a “”superior vena cava syndrome,” which means the “George Jefferson” star died from a complication with a cancerous mass. The mass was reportedly on Hemsley’s lung, and according to published reports, Hemsley was aware of it before his death.
According to the report, Sherman had been advised to get chemo and radiation therapy before he succumbed to his illness. It’s unclear if Sherman was a smoker.
The Philadelphia-born-and-raised actor got his start at the Negro Ensemble Company in New York City in 1970. He would quickly distinguish himself as the breakout star of “All in the Family,” nabbing his own spin-off show “The Jefferson” with his “George Jefferson” character.
Even though Hemsley would land the crotchety-but-lovable “Deacon Frye” in “Amen” during the eighties, he would always be remembered as “George Jefferson,” a role that he reprised throughout the decades in a slew of high-profile commercials and TV shows, including Tyler Perry’s “House of Payne.”
Hemsley will forever be remembered as a top-shelf actor who brightened viewers’ dispositions with his punch lines and offbeat antics.