Richard Belzer has passed away at the age of 78

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Richard Belzer
Richard Belzer as part of the 52nd Monte Carlo Television Festival on June 12, 2012 in Monaco. AFP PHOTO VALERY HACHE

Author and comedian best known for starring in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Richard Belzer has passed away at the age of 78. Late Show with David Letterman writer confirmed; BILL SKIFTE, news of Belzer’s death , telling PEOPLE that Belzer passed away at his home in Beausoleil in southwestern France peacefully with family at his side.

Belzer had some health concerns in the past, surviving cancer in 1983, which eventually inspired his 1997 HBO comedy special Another Lone Nut.

Most notable acting work of Richard Belzer

Belzer’s most recognizable role is Detective John Munch in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. After he starred as the same character in NBC’s Homicide: Life on the Street, Belzer made a total of 330 episodes between 1999 and 2016, an impressive feat! Furthermore, his success continued even after his departure from SVU with two more additional appearances in 2014 and 2016.

Other acting highlights from Belzer’s career include his role in 1983’s Scarface, his role as the boss in 1998’s Species II, and 1991’s The Flash.

Off screen, Belzer had a likable comedic career, and has been vocal about his belief in various conspiracy theories. He often immerses himself in American culture and history, and has been sharing his unique perspectives everywhere from the stage to books.

In 2016, Belzer published his book Hit List: An In Deep Investigation into the Mysterious Deaths of Witnesses to the JFK Assassination. He has also written other works such as UFOs, JFK, and Elvis: Conspiracies You Don’t Have to Be Crazy to Believe and Dead Wrong: Straight Facts on the Country’s Most Controversial Cover-Ups – just a few examples of his extensive knowledge in this field.

Richard Belzer and his family life

Richard Belzer lives with his wife, Harley McBride, whom he married in 1985. They have no children, while McBride has children, Jessica and Shannon Benton, from a previous relationship.

In a 2010 conversation with Cesar’s Way Magazine, he credited his dog Pepe with extending his life: “I have a little bit of a temper, and if I get upset, the dog does. So the dog will make me live longer.”