Earlier today, we learned of the tragic passing of beloved Hollywood icon and star of the 1960s Batman television series Adam West. Now, as the news begins to spread, friends, family, and a number of West’s former colleagues have started opening up, reflecting on the star’s many contributions to TV and film and mourning his loss.
Deadline rounded up statements from some of West’s closest and most frequent collaborators, including Batman ’66 costars Burt Ward and Julie Newmar, as well as Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane, whose flagship show featured West in the role of Quahog’s eccentric Mayor.
“I am devastated at the loss of one my very dearest friends. Adam and I had a special friendship for more than 50 years. We shared some of the most fun times of our lives together. Our families have deep love and respect for each other. This is a terribly unexpected loss of my lifelong friend. I will forever miss him. There are several fine actors who have portrayed Batman in films. In my eyes, there was only one real Batman that is and always will be Adam West. He was truly the Bright Knight.” – Burt Ward
“Stellar, exemplar, a king to the end. He was bright, witty and fun to work with. I will miss him in the physical world and savor him always in the world of imagination and creativity. He meant so much to people – A friend said: ‘The father that we wanted.’ That is a great gift, no matter how you live it.” – Julie Newmar
“Family Guy has lost its mayor, and I have lost a friend. Adam West was a joy to work with, and the kind of guy you always wanted to be around. His positivity, good nature, and sense of fun were undeniable, and it was always a big jolt of the best kind of energy when he walked in to record the show. He knew comedy, and he knew humanity. I am beyond fortunate to have had the privilege of working with him, and he will be profoundly missed by all of us. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all that you have given, Mr. Mayor. You’re irreplaceable.” – Seth MacFarlane
West’s family also took to social media this afternoon to inform the actor’s massive legion of followers of the heartbreaking news.
Our beloved AW passed away last night. He was the greatest. We'll miss him like crazy. We know you'll miss him too – West Family pic.twitter.com/8bkEq1C2ao
— Adam West (@therealadamwest) June 10, 2017
However, it wasn’t just West’s family that took to social media, as a number of other friends, collaborators, and fans also expressed their grief and sent their condolences.
Oh Batman my Batman! I'm standing on my chair to honor #adamwest – the man whose portrayal of costumed justice made me wanna be a good person when I was a boy. The #adamwestbatman was my first Batman at age 4. His performance was campy to most, but to me, that's how true heroes spoke. A lifelong love of the character started with Mr. West's interpretation of what he called, instead of the Dark Knight, the Bright Knight. He brought joy to a somber character and a Fatherly tone to a TV role model. I was lucky enough to meet Adam many times, including the day at @stanleecomiccon when super-fan @ralphgarman and I hosted Adam, Boy Wonder #burtward and movie Catwoman #leemerriweather (where we took this pic). He was pure love and joy. He remained my hero, even in adulthood, as well as a real life role model for interacting with fans. Adam loved his fans – especially #ralphgarman, who worked tirelessly to get Adam a star on the @officialhollywoodwalkoffame. Farewell, Caped Crusader. Off to Superhero Heaven you go, where all your rascally rogues are ready to see you again! Atomic batteries to power. Turbines to speed. Heart to broken. #KevinSmith #adamwest #batman #foreverbatman #rip #legend #icon
Goodbye my friend pic.twitter.com/VxdRwnCCSM
— Kevin Conroy (@RealKevinConroy) June 10, 2017
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) June 10, 2017
I had the privilege of working with Adam West more than once, and he was so kind to me. He was so funny, and so *good* as a person. RIP.
— Wil Wheaton (@wilw) June 10, 2017
— tara strong (@tarastrong) June 10, 2017
The Bright Knight. Rest in peace, Adam West. pic.twitter.com/VM7lN9MoXK
— 20th Century Fox (@20thcenturyfox) June 10, 2017
— Clark Gregg (@clarkgregg) June 10, 2017
— Billy Zane (@BillyZane) June 10, 2017
West’s decades of contributions to Hollywood and pop culture won’t soon be forgotten.