John Witherspoon, 'Friday' actor-comedian, dead at age 77, family says

‘Friday’ actor-comedian John Witherspoon dead at 77

LOS ANGELES — John Witherspoon, the actor and comedian known for his role in "Friday," has died at age 77, his family announced late Tuesday.

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Witherspoon's death came Tuesday at his home in Los Angeles' Sherman Oaks neighborhood, family members told Deadline in a statement. They did not say what caused his death.

"We are all in shock, please give us a minute for a moment in privacy and we will celebrate his life and his work together," the statement read.

According to The Associated Press, Witherspoon starred as "Pops" in the "Friday" movies and provided the voice of Robert "Granddad" Freeman on "The Boondocks." He also played John "Pops" Williams on '90s TV series "The Wayans Bros" and appeared in the movies "Boomerang" and "Vampire in Brooklyn," the AP reported.

Survivors include Witherspoon's wife, Angela, and sons Alexander and J.D., his family told Deadline. The latter took to Twitter to share several throwback photos of him and his father.

"So ... my Dad died today & honestly I'm not sure how to feel," J.D. Witherspoon tweeted. "I'm sad, but I'm also happy 4 all the great times we had together. We'd roast each other like homies more than Father & Son, and I really liked that. He was my best friend & my idol. Love U Dad...I'll miss u."

Fellow celebrities and friends paid tribute to Witherspoon on social media, as well.

"I'm devastated over the passing of John Witherspoon," Ice Cube wrote in a tweet. "Life won't be as funny without him."

"You were my TV dad and my mentor and my friend," actor and comedian Marlon Wayans added in an Instagram post. "I miss you already."

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– The Associated Press contributed to this report.