Television icon Dick Clark passed away yesterday at the age of 82 after suffering a massive heart attack, reports People.com. Clark became a household name as the host of American Bandstand and went on to host and produce the $10,000 Pyramid and other game shows, as well as the American Music Awards, the Academy of Country Music Awards, Golden Globes and, starting in 1972, Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve.
Clark suffered a stroke in 2004 that left him partially paralyzed and his speech impaired. Regis Philbin filled in for him for a year, but Clark returned a year later and addressed the audience regarding his slurred speech. He continued to appear on the show, but later passed the hosting reins to Ryan Seacrest.
Following the news of his passing, country stars took to Twitter and Facebook to offer their condolences and share their stories and memories of Clark and his legendary career. Kenny Rogers knew him well and issued a statement after receiving the news of his friend’s death.
“I’m one of the lucky people who can say that I knew Dick Clark personally,” he said. “Dick produced almost every awards show I was on during the ’80s, and he constantly encouraged me toward success. He will be missed by everyone–especially by those who knew him well.”
Little Big Town posted their condolences on Facebook. “To one of the greatest legends of our generation,” they wrote. “When we think of music & celebrations, we think of you. Thank you for what you gave us all. We love you, Dick Clark.”
Trisha Yearwood issued a similar statement through her Facebook page. “Sending love and strength to the Dick Clark family,” she said. “He was not only a legacy in the entertainment industry, but a really nice guy. We miss you. Rest in peace.”
Many more country stars tweeted their condolences:
Brad Paisley – BradPaisley: My heart goes out to Dick Clark’s family.What a life.Thank you for all you did, and your friendship. Now go get the music rockin’ in heaven.
Dick Clark is survived by his wife Kari and his three children, RAC, Duane and Cindy.