British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with numerous hits in the 80s group Wham!, has died at the age of 53.
A statement from his publicist said the 53-year-old died peacefully at home.
“It is with great sadness that we can confirm our beloved son, brother and friend George passed away peacefully at home over the Christmas period.
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“The family would ask that their privacy be respected at this difficult and emotional time. There will be no further comment at this stage.”
Local police confirmed an ambulance attended a property in Goring, Oxfordshire on Christmas Day.
Police say there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death.
The singer nearly died in 2011 when he struggled with pneumonia, and just recently he made an appearance outside his London home saying it had been “touch and go” with his health for many years.
Michael had a tracheotomy to keep his airways open recently.
Tributes have poured in for the star on Twitter.
Michael joins a number of prominent people to pass away in 2016.
Jan 10 – David Bowie (69, UK rock music great)
Jan 14 – Alan Rickman (69, English actor)
Jan 18 – Glenn Frey (67, Eagles founder)
Feb 19 – Harper Lee (89, US author To Kill a Mockingbird)
March 9 – Jon English (66, Australian singer, songwriter, musician and actor)
March 24 – Garry Shandling, (66, US comedian/actor/writer)
March 31 – Ronnie Corbett (85, British comedian and actor (The Two Ronnies)
April 6 – Merle Haggard (79, US country singer-songwriter)
April 21 – Prince (57, US rock musician)
June 3 – Muhammad Ali (74, US boxer, Olympic gold medalist)
July 19 – Garry Marshall (81, US writer/director Pretty Woman, Happy Days)
Aug 29 – Gene Wilder (83, US actor – The Producers, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory)
Sept 25 – Arnold Palmer (87, US golf great)
Sept 28 – Max Walker (68, Australian Test cricketer/commentator)
Oct 7 – Ross Higgins (85, Australian TV actor, comedian and voice actor. Best known for his role as Ted Bullpitt in Kingwood Country and Louie The Fly ad)
Nov 7 – Leonard Cohen (82, Canadian singer-songwriter, poet and novelist)
Nov 11 – Robert Vaughn (83, US actor best known for The Man from U.N.C.L.E)
Nov 24 – Florence Henderson (82, US actor who played Carol Brady in the Brady Bunch)
Dec 2 – Andrew Sachs (86, British actor who became a household name as Manuel in the 1970s sitcom Fawlty Towers)
Dec 18 – Zsa Zsa Gabor (99, Hungarian-American actress and socialite)
Dec 24 – Rick Parfitt (68, Status Quo singer/guitarist)
Dec 25 – George Michael (53, British pop superstar)