Casey Kasem, best known for his radio show American Top 40, passed away early on Father's Day at the age of 82. His death was confirmed earlier on Sunday by his agent Don Pitts.
Kasem's children Kerri, Mike, and Julie Kasem issued a joint statement about their dad's death that was released by Casey Kasem's rep Danny Deraney.
"Early this Father's Day morning, our dad Casey Kasem passed away surrounded by family and friends," the statement reads. "Even though we know he is in a better place and no longer suffering, we are heartbroken ... The world will miss Casey Kasem, an incredible talent and humanitarian; we will miss our Dad."
Casey Kasem had been hospitalized in Washington state for the past two weeks following court proceedings that not only put his daughter in charge of his medical decisions but also gave her permission to tell the hospital to withhold food and water during his last days. Kasem's current wife Jean Kasem challenged both of these decisions but was overruled. She stayed away from her husband during his last two weeks even though the Kasem children urged her to come and spend these last days with her husband.
Casey Kasem was one of the creators of American Top 40 back in the 1970s. The first show aired on July 4, 1970. The show counts down the top radio hits of the week and is now hosted by Ryan Seacrest. Seacrest posted the following about his dear friend and mentor.
Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars. We’ll miss you, Casey. pic.twitter.com/cxYhONfrqz
— Ryan Seacrest (@RyanSeacrest) June 15, 2014
Kasem also did many radio and TV commercials--lending his distinguished voice to countless products and events. He didn't appear on screen, however. He also provided the voice of Shaggy in the Scooby-Doo franchise for many years.
RIP Casey Kasem. Only one word can properly address the passing of the original voice of Shaggy. "Zoinks!" pic.twitter.com/etqaYSqFj0
— MALAV #ITA KARKAR (@MalavKarkar) June 15, 2014
The American music world has lost a legend. Casey Kasem was many young music enthusiasts' first voice on the radio, introducing them to a wealth of music and sharing tidbits about the bands and their songs. Fans are missing him already.
One of my bands greatest moments ..Was the last song Casey Kasem played on "Top 40 Countdown" was "Second Chance" I'll never forget it. #RIP
— Zach Myers (@ZMyersOfficial) June 15, 2014
An autopsy won't be performed on Kasem since a doctor was present when he passed away. Daughter Julie Kasem plans to host a memorial celebration at her Northridge, Caifornia, home on Saturday June 21 for her father. No other funeral arrangements have yet been announced.
Casey Kasem's last months weren't particularly peaceful ones, even though his children certainly had his best interests at heart. May he rest in eternal peace now that his battles on earth are over.
Image via Twitter