Paul Reubens' cause of death confirmed a month after he dies at 70

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By VT

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Over a month after actor and comedian Paul Reubens, best known for playing the lovable character Pee-wee Herman, passed away at age 70, his cause of death has been revealed.

Reubens had a significant impact on American culture and comedy. In a touching statement issued posthumously, he wrote via Variety, "Please accept my apology for not going public with what I’ve been facing the last six years.

"I have always felt a huge amount of love and respect from my friends, fans and supporters. I have loved you all so much and enjoyed making art for you."

A statement from Reubens' representative reads: "Last night we said farewell to Paul Reubens, an iconic American actor, comedian, writer and producer whose beloved character Pee-wee Herman delighted generations of children and adults with his positivity, whimsy and belief in the importance of kindness."

"Paul bravely and privately fought cancer for years with his trademark tenacity and wit," the statement continued. "A gifted and prolific talent, he will forever live in the comedy pantheon and in our hearts as a treasured friend and man of remarkable character and generosity of spirit."

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Credit: Barry King/Getty

According to the death certificate obtained by People, Reubens died of acute hypoxic respiratory failure, a condition where "your lungs cannot release enough oxygen into your blood," according to Healthline.

The entertainer, who had kept his health issues private for years, was also battling two types of cancer.

Acute myelogenous leukemia was cited as an underlying sequential cause of his death, a "cancer of the blood and bone marrow," says Mayo Clinic. The late actor had also been diagnosed with metastatic lung cancer in the months leading up to his death, a condition which "spreads to other parts of your body," per WebMD.

size-full wp-image-1263223041
Credit: Walter McBride/Corbis/Getty

Reubens was a beloved figure in American entertainment, making his debut as Pee-wee Herman at The Groundlings Theatre in 1981. He later brought the character to a larger audience on HBO before appearing in big screen adventures like 1985's Pee-wee’s Big Adventure and its 1988 sequel, Big Top Pee-wee.

His CBS show, Pee-wee’s Playhouse, was on the air from 1986 to 1990 and bagged an astounding 22 Emmy Awards. Reubens himself was nominated for 14 Emmys, winning twice.

Beyond Pee-wee Herman, Reubens also had a range of other roles, including appearances on popular shows like 30 Rock, The Blacklist, Gotham, and What We Do in the Shadows, and a role in the original film version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in 1992.

Featured image credit: Mike Pont/WireImage/Getty

Paul Reubens' cause of death confirmed a month after he dies at 70

vt-author-image

By VT

Article saved!Article saved!

Over a month after actor and comedian Paul Reubens, best known for playing the lovable character Pee-wee Herman, passed away at age 70, his cause of death has been revealed.

Reubens had a significant impact on American culture and comedy. In a touching statement issued posthumously, he wrote via Variety, "Please accept my apology for not going public with what I’ve been facing the last six years.

"I have always felt a huge amount of love and respect from my friends, fans and supporters. I have loved you all so much and enjoyed making art for you."

A statement from Reubens' representative reads: "Last night we said farewell to Paul Reubens, an iconic American actor, comedian, writer and producer whose beloved character Pee-wee Herman delighted generations of children and adults with his positivity, whimsy and belief in the importance of kindness."

"Paul bravely and privately fought cancer for years with his trademark tenacity and wit," the statement continued. "A gifted and prolific talent, he will forever live in the comedy pantheon and in our hearts as a treasured friend and man of remarkable character and generosity of spirit."

size-full wp-image-1263223039
Credit: Barry King/Getty

According to the death certificate obtained by People, Reubens died of acute hypoxic respiratory failure, a condition where "your lungs cannot release enough oxygen into your blood," according to Healthline.

The entertainer, who had kept his health issues private for years, was also battling two types of cancer.

Acute myelogenous leukemia was cited as an underlying sequential cause of his death, a "cancer of the blood and bone marrow," says Mayo Clinic. The late actor had also been diagnosed with metastatic lung cancer in the months leading up to his death, a condition which "spreads to other parts of your body," per WebMD.

size-full wp-image-1263223041
Credit: Walter McBride/Corbis/Getty

Reubens was a beloved figure in American entertainment, making his debut as Pee-wee Herman at The Groundlings Theatre in 1981. He later brought the character to a larger audience on HBO before appearing in big screen adventures like 1985's Pee-wee’s Big Adventure and its 1988 sequel, Big Top Pee-wee.

His CBS show, Pee-wee’s Playhouse, was on the air from 1986 to 1990 and bagged an astounding 22 Emmy Awards. Reubens himself was nominated for 14 Emmys, winning twice.

Beyond Pee-wee Herman, Reubens also had a range of other roles, including appearances on popular shows like 30 Rock, The Blacklist, Gotham, and What We Do in the Shadows, and a role in the original film version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in 1992.

Featured image credit: Mike Pont/WireImage/Getty