The cast of Saved by the Bell is paying tribute to their former costar Dustin Diamond, who died on Monday at the age of 44.
Diamond died after an aggressive battle with Stage 4 lung cancer. In the wake of his passing, former costar Mark-Paul Gosselaar issued the following statement to TVLine:
I’m deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Dustin Diamond, a true comedic genius. My sincere condolences to his family and friends. Looking back at our time working together, I will miss those raw, brilliant sparks that only he was able to produce. A pie in your face, my comrade.
Mario Lopez also weighed in via social media. “Dustin, you will be missed my man,” he said. “The fragility of this life is something never to be taken for granted. Prayers for your family will continue on.”
Added Tiffani Thiessen, “I am deeply saddened by the news of my old co-star @realdustindiamond passing. Life is extremely fragile and it’s something we should never take for granted. God speed Dustin.”
Diamond appeared in 248 episodes of the SBTB franchise, having originated the character in the short-lived Disney Channel series Good Morning, Miss Bliss. As one of only four cast members to make the leap to NBC’s Saved by the Bell, he continued to portray Screech in the spinoffs The College Years and The New Class. He also appeared in both made-for-TV movies, Saved by the Bell: Hawaiian Style and Saved by the Bell: Wedding in Las Vegas.
Saved by the Bell was recently revived (and renewed) by Peacock, albeit, without Diamond. Bell 2.0 explained Screech’s absence by telling viewers he was living on the International Space Station with his robot Kevin.
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