LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Actor Dustin Diamond, best known for his role as lovable geek Samuel “Screech” Powers on TV’s “Saved By The Bell”, has died, according to a spokesperson.
Diamond, 44, begun undergoing chemotherapy treatments last month after being diagnosed with cancer, a representative told the Associated Press.READ MORE: For 2nd Straight Year, San Diego Comic-Con Will Be Virtual
A spokesperson for Diamond released a statement to Entertainment Tonight that read in part: “We are saddened to confirm of Dustin Diamond’s passing on Monday, February 1st, 2021 due to carcinoma. He was diagnosed with this brutal, relentless form of malignant cancer only three weeks ago. In that time, it managed to spread rapidly throughout his system; the only mercy it exhibited was its sharp and swift execution. Dustin did not suffer. He did not have to lie submerged in pain. For that, we are grateful.”
Airing on TV from 1989 to 1993, “Saved By The Bell” led to spinoffs such as “Saved by the Bell: The College Years” and “Saved by the Bell: The New Class,” both of which Diamond starred in.
A sequel was launched on Peacock this fall featuring Elizabeth Berkley, Mario Lopez, Tiffani Thiessen, Mark-Paul Gosselaar and others from the original cast, but Diamond was not involved in the project.
Former castmates took to social media with condolences and well-wishes. Mario Lopez posted this to Twitter: “Dustin, you will be missed my man. The fragility of this life is something never to be taken for granted. Prayers for your family will continue on.”
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Dustin, you will be missed my man. The fragility of this life is something never to be taken for granted. Prayers for your family will continue on… pic.twitter.com/BnxY9XgN5g
— Mario Lopez (@mariolopezviva) February 1, 2021
I am deeply saddened by I the news of my old co-star @realdustindiamond passing. Life is extremely fragile and it’s something we should never take for granted. God speed Dustin. 💔 https://t.co/r3NVsWK2K4
— Tiffani Thiessen (@TiffaniThiessen) February 1, 2021
Deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Dustin Diamond, a true comedic genius. My sincere condolences to his family and friends. Looking back at our time working together, I will miss those raw, brilliant sparks that only he was able to produce. A pie in your face, my comrade.
— Mark-Paul Gosselaar (@MPG) February 1, 2021
Diamond recently faced litigation for delinquent taxes and was in foreclosure proceedings for missing mortgage payments on his home.
In addition to “Saved By The Bell”, Diamond has appeared on reality TV shows, made a sex tape and produced “The Unauthorized Saved by the Bell Story” on Lifetime TV.MORE NEWS: 2 Injured In Glassell Park Shooting; Authorities Searching For Suspect
He served 4 months in jail in 2015 for a conviction involving a barroom stabbing in Wisconsin.