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NEW: Top clinician for notorious treatment center gets 5 years in prison

'Fawlty Towers' star Andrew Sachs dies at 86


Andrew Sachs, who played the harassed waiter Manuel on the British television comedy “Fawlty Towers,” has died, the United Kingdom’s Press Association reported Thursday. He was 86.

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The actor, known for his portrayal of the bumbling Spanish waiter in the BBC series, died Nov. 23 after suffering from vascular dementia for four years, the Daily Mail reported. The condition prevented Sachs from speaking. He was buried on Thursday.

“It didn’t get really bad until quite near the end,” Sachs’ wife, Melody, told the Daily Mail. “I nursed Andrew, I was there for every moment of it.”

Sachs was born April 7, 1930, in Berlin, Germany. When he was 8, Sachs and his parents left Germany to escape Nazi persecution — his father was Jewish and his mother was Catholic — and settled in London.

“Fawlty Towers” creator John Cleese paid tribute to Sachs on Twitter, calling him “a very sweet, gentle and kind man.”

"I first saw him in ‘Habeas Corpus’ on stage in 1973," Cleese tweeted. "I could not have found a better Manuel. Inspired."

“Blackadder” actor Tony Robinson also honored Sachs on Twitter. “A true friend and a kindred spirit,” he tweeted.

Comedy writer Edgar Wright tweeted that Sachs “spun comic gold.”

In addition to his role on “Fawlty Towers,” Sachs narrated audio books and appeared on several children’s TV programs. He also appeared in the British soap opera, “Coronation Street” and appeared in 27 episodes.

In 2008, a prank phone call to Sachs by Russell Brand, in which the comedian claimed he'd had sex with the actor's 23-year-old granddaughter, resulted in Brand's resignation and an apology, CNN reported.


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