English actor Sir Roger George Moore, who is best known for playing the role of secret agent James Bond in seven films of the series between the years 1973 and 1985, has died. The actor, who later became an author and a UNICEF ambassador, passed away in Switzerland after a short battle with cancer. He was 89. The news about Sir Roger Moore’s death was tweeted by his family members on his own official Twitter account earlier this morning.
Roger Moore’s family also issued a statement, which is included in its entirety below.
“It is with a heavy heart that we must announce our loving father, Sir Roger Moore, has passed away today in Switzerland after a short but brave battle with cancer. The love with which he was surrounded in his final days was so great it cannot be quantified in words alone.
We know our own love and admiration will be magnified many times over, across the world, by people who knew him for his films, his television shows and his passionate work for UNICEF which he considered to be his greatest achievement.
The affection our father felt whenever he walked on to a stage or in front of a camera buoyed him hugely and kept him busy working into his 90th year, through to his last appearance in November 2016 on stage at London’s Royal Festival Hall. The capacity crowd cheered him on and off stage, shaking the very foundations of the building just a short distance from where he was born.
Thank you Pops for being you, and for being so very special to so many people.
Our thoughts must now turn to supporting Kristina at this difficult time, and in accordance with our father’s wishes there will be a private funeral in Monaco.
Deborah, Geoffrey and Christian.”
With the heaviest of hearts, we must share the awful news that our father, Sir Roger Moore, passed away today. We are all devastated. pic.twitter.com/6dhiA6dnVg
— Sir Roger Moore (@sirrogermoore) May 23, 2017
Following the news of Roger Moore’s passing, his fans have taken to social media to express their grief.
— Poltrona Nerd (@PoltronaNerd) May 23, 2017
— Joe (@MojoAbd) May 23, 2017
— James Patrick Herman (@TheGlamourGuy) May 23, 2017
Born in London on October 14, 1927, Roger was the only son of George Alfred Moore and Lillian. His mother was an English lady born in Calcutta (now Kolkata), India. After attending the Battersea Grammar School, he attended Launceston College school during World War II, followed by some time at Dr. Challoner’s Grammar School in Amersham, Buckinghamshire. Even though Roger Moore attended college, he did not graduate. Moore also served in the military and was conscripted at the age of 18. He initially served as a second lieutenant general and by the time he retired, he became a captain and commanded a small depot in West Germany.
In the 1950s, Moore began his career in show business, starting off as a model. He subsequently signed a seven-year contract with MGM. He was also with Warner Bros. for a brief period before turning his attention to Television in the late 50’s. Moore starred in popular TV series like Ivanhoe, The Alaskans, Maverick, The Saint, and The Persuaders, following which he was roped into play the role of James Bond in 1973.
Moore was the longest-serving James Bond actor, having spent 12 years playing the role — starting in 1973 and ending in 1985. He also happens to be the oldest actor to have played the role. He was 43 when he played the role in his first Bond film, Live and Let Die (1973), and 58 when he announced his retirement in 1985. After his last Bond film in 1985, Moore took a long hiatus from work – only to return in 1990. Moore was in his later years noted for his humanitarian work and was named an UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in 1991. He also voiced the character of ‘Santa’ in the 2004 UNICEF cartoon The Fly Who Loved Me. Roger Moore was also known for his association with PETA.
[Featured Image File/AP Images]