Keith Hefner, Younger Brother To Hugh Hefner, Dies At 87

Keith Hefner, the younger brother to Playboy‘s iconic founder Hugh Hefner, died Friday at the age of 87. According to TMZ, Hefner died in his home located in Beverly Hills, California. The cause of death is unknown, but it was reported that he had been battling cancer. Currently, it is unknown if this played any part in the younger Hefner’s passing.

Keith Hefner played an important role for Playboy as an executive, and it was he who recruited and helped train models who would go on to be a part of the Playboy production. He was also known for his constant appearances on Girls Next Door, a television series focused on Hugh Hefner’s three girlfriends at the time: Holly Madison, Bridget Marquardt, and Kendra Wilkinson. The show documented Hugh Hefner’s experiences with them, with Keith Hefner becoming a familiar face through the show’s episodes. The show’s runtime was from 2005 until 2010.

This was not his first time on television, however, as Keith had gotten into acting when he was younger. Some of his accomplishments include being part of the cast of the television show Get Smart in 1969, the movie Evil Town in 1977, and Fever Pitch in 1985. He also appeared on two episodes of Kendra’s spinoff show, Kendra, and a single episode of Holly’s spinoff show, Holly’s World. Keith Hefner also hosted two local kids television shows in his career, Mr. Toby’s Tip Top Merry Go Round and Time For Fun/The Johnny Jellybean Show.

The unfortunate news of Keith Hefner’s death came only one day before tycoon Hugh Hefner’s 90th birthday. The older brother had received much love through messages from his family, though the day was tarnished with the news of Keith Hefner’s passing. Confirming the death of his younger sibling, Hugh tweeted out to his followers on Friday afternoon.

“This morning, my dear brother and best friend passed away. I love you, Keith. Rest in peace.”

Despite the bittersweet occasion, founder Hugh Hefner celebrated his birthday with his wife, Crystal Hefner. The 29-year-old spouse posted a photo of the two of them on Instagram from 2015, standing close beside a poster of Hugh’s favorite movie, the 1942 classic Casablanca.

“Happy 90th to a man with a heart of gold. @hughhefner #casablancanight,” Crystal captioned the photo. The two have been married since 2012, having wed at the Playboy Mansion.

Keith Hefner’s wife, model Caya Hefner, had recently been sharing loving photos of the two of them while including captions.

“You’ve given me so much love and support!! I’m forever grateful. Love you, Keith..”, she tweeted out on March 21. She even tweeted an image of the two of them alongside Hugh Hefner, expressing her love for both brother-in-law and husband. It was clear that Keith Hefner had a great sense of humor, as stated by her when she posted a selfie of herself and the Playboy executive cuddled in bed with hearts adorning the corners of the picture.

Former Playboy Playmate Kendra Wilkinson-Baskett also tweets about the loss of Keith Hefner, as they worked closely together as reality television stars.

“Just heard the news about Keith Hefner. He was such an awesome guy. I will miss him. #RIPKeith”

According to E! Online, Keith is credited with coming up with the “Bunny Dip,” a signature move that the Playboy bunnies would perform when serving drinks to guests around the time of the Playboy Club days. Fans of Keith Hefner are able to see his loving character through both Twitter and Instagram, moments of his life displayed by those he loved and called family.

How do you feel about the death of the iconic executive of Playboy? Will Playboy, as a whole, come under change from such a tragedy? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

[Image via Lucy Nicholson, Getty Images]

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