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THE TRAGIC DEATH OF GILBERT GOTTFRIED
By VINNEY WONG
Famous comedian Gilbert Gottfried has died, according to a statement released by his family on his Twitter account. "We are heartbroken to announce the passing of our beloved Gilbert Gottfried after a long illness," the statement read.
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In an additional statement to People, Gottfried's publicist Glenn Schwartz said the cause of death was from recurrent ventricular tachycardia due to myotonic dystrophy type II — also known as a heart rhythm problem. Gottfried was 67 years old.
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Gottfried may be best known for his role as Iago in "Aladdin," but he was a standout comedian widely known for pushing boundaries. He voiced the Aflac duck for the insurance company of the same name, until he was fired in 2011 for jokes about the Japan earthquake and tsunami.
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In a 2012 interview with Rolling Stone, Gottfried said he didn't see any problems with crossing the line. "I enjoy the kind of hypocrisy where it is like, 'If you make jokes about these topics, you're a bad person' – and if I don't make jokes, and maybe even go so far as wearing a little ribbon on my lapel, that makes me a good person," he said.
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