Actor Chuy Bravo, a late-night TV staple on Chelsea Handler’s former talk show, died Saturday a week after his 63rd birthday.
Bravo was suffering from acute stomach pain and rushed to a Mexico City hospital where he later died, according to Entertainment Tonight.
His passing prompted a touching goodbye post on Instagram from Handler, whose “Chelsea Lately” aired on E! from 2007 to 2014, with Bravo participating for the entire run. Handler often affectionately referred to the 4-foot-3 actor as her “nugget,” a nickname that he embraced.
Posting a collage of images, Handler wrote: “I loved this nugget in a big way, and I took great pleasure in how many people loved him as much as I did and do. @chuybravo gave us so much laughter and I’ll never forget the sound of his laughter coming from his office into mine.”
“I love you, Chuy!” Handler concluded.
Bravo was born Jesus Melgoza in Tangancícuaro, Michoacán, Mexico, and emigrated to Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley at 15, Variety noted.
The actor said in 2012 that he was a prostate cancer survivor and recovering alcoholic who was nearly homeless at one point. He later launched the Little Nugget Foundation to help people in his hometown struggling with alcohol addiction.
Bravo also appeared in “The Honeymooners” (2005) and “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” (2007).
“Bravo’s family is devastated as they cope with his sudden loss. They are overwhelmed with the thoughts and prayers they have received and send their appreciation,” the actor’s representative said in a statement to People.
Bravo had celebrated his birthday on Dec. 7 and received greetings from Handler.
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