Harold Ramis a.k.a. Egon Spengler of ‘Ghostbusters’ Dies at 69
“Ghostbusters” star Harold Ramis died at 69 years old in his Chicago home due to autoimmune inflammatory vasculitis. It is a rare disease that causes the swelling of blood vessels. The comedian started his battle with the disease in 2010 and succumbed to it on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014. Ramis left behind his wife Erica, his children Julian, Daniel and Violet and two grandchildren.
Ramis was well-known for his role as Egon Spengler in the 80s hit movie “Ghostbusters.” He starred alongside Billy Murray and Dan Aykroyd.
He was born to Ruth and Nathan Ramis in 1944. He attended Stephen K. Hayt Elementary School, Nicholas Senn High School and Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.
Before making it big in Hollywood, Ramis started as a freelance writer. Then, he later joined The Second City improv comedy troupe in 1969. He was also working as a jokes editor in Playboy magazine during the day. His first on-screen appearance was at the movie “National Lampoon’s Animal House” in 1978.
Ramis was not only an actor, but he was also a writer and a director. In fact, he wrote “Ghostbusters” with co-actor Dan Aykroyd and directed several films including “Analyze This” (1999) and “Analyze That” (2002).
He won several awards such as BAFTA award for screenwriting, British Comedy Award and the American Comedy Award. Moreover, the movies which he has written “National Lampoon’s Animal House,” “Caddyshack,” “Ghostbusters” and “Groundhog Day,” made it to the American Film Institute’s 100 Funniest Movies.
His other works include “Meatballs” (1979), “Stripes” (1981), “Knocked Up” (2007) and “Year One” (2009).
Friends and other co-actors recalled their experience with Ramis and prayed for the repose of his soul. In an e-mail sent to Entertainment Weekly, Aykroyd stated that he was “deeply saddened to hear the passing of my brilliant, gifted, funny friend, co-writer/performer and teacher Harold Ramis. May he now get the answers he was always seeking.”
“Harold was clearly the most successful comedy writer-director of all time. The number of films that he has made that were successful, that were blockbusters, nobody comes close. Even in light in of that, he was more successful as a human being,” said Ramis’ friend and co-member in the Second City Tim Kazurinsky in a report by Chicago Tribune.