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Richard Belzer dies, Law & Order star’s last words, tributes

Actor and comedian Richard Belzer has died at the age of 78. Belzer died in the early hours of Sunday at his home in Bozouls, southwest France. The official cause of Belzer’s death was not immediately known.

Bill Scheft, a former “Late Show with David Letterman” writer and longtime friend of Belzer’s, told The Hollywood Reporter, “He had a lot of health problems and his last words were, ‘Fuck** *, mother whore”. ‘”

Belzer is survived by his third wife, actress Harlee McBride, and two stepdaughters.

Belzer was best known for his role as Detective John Munch on the television series “Law & Order.” He also appeared in other hit TV shows such as “Law & Order: SVU,” “Homicide: Life on the Street,” “The X Files,” “The Wire,” “South Park,” “30 Rock,” ” Arrested.” Development,” “Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman,” “The Larry Sanders Show,” and “Moonlighting.” Belzer retired from acting in 2016.

Belzer was a featured voice on the “National Lampoon Radio Hour” and the “Howard Stern Show.”

Belzer was an accomplished stand-up comedian. He was the crowd-warming comedian on “Saturday Night Live” from 1975 to 1980, when he made three guest appearances on “SNL.”

Celebrity tributes poured in for the “Law & Order” star.

Mariska Hargitay honored her “Law & Order: SVU” co-star in an emotional Instagram post.

“Goodbye dear, dear friend. I will miss you, your unique light and unique vision of this strange world. I feel blessed to have known and adored you and worked with you, side by side, for so many years. How lucky the angels are to have you. I can already hear them laughing. I love you so much, now and forever,” Hargitay wrote.

Dick Wolf, creator and executive producer of “Law & Order: SVU,” said in a statement: “Richard Belzer’s Detective John Munch is one of television’s iconic characters. I first worked with Richard on the “Law & Order/Homicide” crossover and I loved the character so much, I told Tom (Fontana) I wanted to make him one of the original ‘SVU’ characters. The rest is history. Richard brought humor and joy to all our lives, he was a consummate professional and we will all miss him dearly.”

Actor Vincent D’Onofrio said: “Richard Belzer he was always so kind to me. We met at the comedy club he was performing in years before L&O. I was young with only one film in my career. He always remembered me. I had the pleasure of staying with him a couple of times. Sweet sweet man and funny as hell. He will be missed.”

Podcast host Marc Maron said: “Richard Belzer passed away. He was an original. One of the greats, baby. Loved the guy. RIP.”

Comedian Jeff Ross wrote on Twitter: “Belz… Even holding his dog, he was always the coolest cat in the room.”

u201cEl Belzu2026 Even holding his dog, he was always the coolest cat in the room. #RichardBelzeru201d

— Jeff Ross (@JeffRoss) 1676821307

comedian George Wallaceremembered, “1976 in Catch a Rising Star. I was called to a stage for the first time. For Richard Belzer. Bye. I will love you forever.”

comedian Lewis Black added: “Unfortunately we lose the only one Richard Belzer. Belz was a pleasure and I was lucky enough to work with him as an actor and comedian. He was as smart as he was funny and to watch him act was to know why they had to get the word sardonic. Good trip.”

Laraine Newman, an original “Saturday Night Live” cast member, tweeted: “So sad to hear of Richard Belzer’s passing. I loved this guy so much. He was one of my first friends when I got to New York to do SNL. We used to go out to dinner every week in Sheepshead Bay for lobster. One of the funniest people ever. A master at working crowds. Dear RIP.”

I am very saddened to hear of the passing of Richard Belzer. I loved this guy so much. He was one of my first friends when I came to New York to do SNL. We used to go out to dinner every week in Sheepshead Bay to look for lobster. One of the funniest people ever. A master at working crowds. Dear RIP.u201d

— Laraine Newman (@LaraineNewman) 1676820102

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