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Monty Python Star Terry Jones Dead at 77

The actor and writer was diagnosed with dementia in 2015

Amanda Bell

Monty Python star Terry Jones died Tuesday at the age of 77. The actor had been diagnosed with dementia in 2015.

In a statement to the BBC, his family said, "We are deeply saddened to have to announce the passing of beloved husband and father, Terry Jones. Terry passed away on the evening of 21 January 2020 at the age of 77 with his wife Anna Soderstrom by his side after a long, extremely brave but always good humoured battle with a rare form of dementia, FTD."

"Over the past few days his wife, children, extended family and many close friends have been constantly with Terry as he gently slipped away at his home in north London. We have all lost a kind, funny, warm, creative and truly loving man whose uncompromising individuality, relentless intellect and extraordinary humour has given pleasure to countless millions across six decades," the statement continued. "His work with Monty Python, his books, films, television programmes, poems and other work will live on forever, a fitting legacy to a true polymath."

Jones was known for his work on the sketch comedy seriesMonty Python's Flying Circus, both on screen and behind the scenes as a writer for dozens of episodes. He also co-wrote and directed Monty Python's Life of Brianand co-wrote and co-directedMonty Python's The Meaning of Life andMonty Python and the Holy Grailwith Terry Gilliam, in addition to starring in those films. The Meaning of Life won the Grand Jury Prize at the 1983 Cannes Film Festival, and Jones was co-nominated for a BAFTA for the feature's original song "Every Sperm Is Sacred" in 1984. In 2004, he was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for his writing on Medieval Lives, a documentary about the Middle Ages.

In 2014, Jones reunited with Gilliam and other members of the Monty Python comedy crew -- John Cleese, Eric Idle, and Michael Palin -- for a London stage show called Monty Python Live (Mostly).