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Terry Jones, Monty Python star, dies at the age of 77

His co-star Michael Palin has paid a moving tribute

Gemma Strong

The comedy world is mourning the death of one of Britain's most beloved entertainers, Terry Jones. The Monty Python star passed away on Tuesday at the age of 77, having been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia in 2016. A statement released by his heartbroken family confirmed the news. "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 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."

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Terry Jones pictured with his wife Anna in 2016

It continued: "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. 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."

Terry Jones accepts his Bafta Fellowship 2016

Fellow Python Sir Michael Palin said: "Terry was one of my closest, most valued friends. He was kind, generous, supportive and passionate about living life to the full. He was far more than one of the funniest writer-performers of his generation, he was the complete Renaissance comedian - writer, director, presenter, historian, brilliant children's author, and the warmest, most wonderful company you could wish to have."

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With Monty Python co-star Sir Michael Palin

Terry graduated from Oxford University with Michael, and they went on to co-create Monty Python's Flying Circus with Cambridge graduates John Cleese, Eric Idle, Graham Chapman and Terry Gilliam. He was married twice; he tied the knot with Alison Telfer in 1970, and together they welcomed two children, Sally and Bill. In 2012, he married Anna Soderstrom - 41 years his junior - and in September 2009 the couple became proud parents to daughter Siri.