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Comedian Bobby Ball dies aged 76 after testing positive for Covid-19
29 October 2020, 09:36 | Updated: 29 October 2020, 10:01
Bobby Ball, one half of comedy double act Cannon & Ball, has died at the age of 76 after testing positive for coronavirus.
His manager confirmed the comedian had been hospitalised with breathing problems before testing positive for the virus.
He passed away on Wednesday evening.
A statement said: "It is with great personal sadness that on behalf of Yvonne Ball, and the family, and Tommy Cannon, I announce that Bobby Ball passed away at Blackpool Victoria Hospital on the 28th October 2020 approximately 21:30.
"Bobby had been taken to the hospital for tests as he started with breathing problems. At first it was thought to be a chest infection but a test proved positive for Covid-19.
"His wife Yvonne said the hospital and staff could not have been more wonderful, as they were outstanding in their care of duty and they did everything possible for him and she cannot praise them enough.
Just heard the sad news that the wonderful Bobby Ball has died. He was a true entertainer with real funny bones. Thoughts with Tommy,Yvonne and his family at this sad time. RIP Bobby— Les Dennis (@LesDennis) October 29, 2020
"She said that the family and Tommy would like to express their sincere thanks to the many, many people who have been fans of Bobby and they know that they will all share in part the great loss and total sadness that Yvonne, the family and Tommy all feel.
"Yvonne added that their need for privacy at this time has to be a priority. No further announcements or statements will be made."
Ball was born Robert Harper on January 28 1944 and found fame on the The Cannon & Ball Show opposite his lifelong friend Tommy Cannon.
He also appeared in TV series including Last Of The Summer Wine, Heartbeat, Mount Pleasant, Benidorm, The Cockfields and Not Going Out, and the duo appeared on I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! in 2005.
Ball's wife Yvonne said: "I will always miss him, he was so joyful, full of fun and mischievous."
Tommy Cannon said: "Rock on, my good friend, I can't believe this, I'm devastated."
Ball's manager Phil Dale said: "Bobby was a true comedy star who loved entertaining people and he loved life itself. I spoke to him every day and it would always end in laughter."