CNN reports that “America’s Oldest Teen”, Dick Clark, passed away at 82 years old on Wednesday. The TV host was at St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica for an outpatient procedure when he suffered a fatal heart attack.
Dick Clark’s medical condition hadn’t been very good in the past years. In December 2004, he suffered “a mild stroke” two months after he had been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. He suffered a heart attack on Wednesday, but doctors at St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica were not able to resuscitate him. The family did not say whether they will organize a public memorial service, but they stated that there will be no funeral service for Clark.
Ever since his first stroke in 2004, Clark was forced to retire from his on-camera activity. He even gave up hosting the famous shows called “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve”. Despite this, the TV show host couldn’t keep away from the entertainment industry, so he became Ryan Seacrest’s co-host on December 31, 2005.
The stroke left Clark with various speech problems, which is why he was afraid he won’t be able to perform during the show the way he used to when he was healthy. Despite this, he considered that it was his duty to continue hosting the show because he was an example for all people who were stroke victims.
He began hosting one of his most popular broadcasts, “American Bandstand” in Philadelphia, in 1956 and was soon nicknamed “America’s oldest living teenager”. The TV programme was highly appreciated by African American people because many bands made it in the music industry once they had an appearance in the show. Singer Tony Orlando even declared when he was 16 years old that “only God is responsible for making more stars than Dick Clark”.
People who knew Dick Clark contacted CNN to express their sincere regrets for the passing away of the entertainer. Shawn Stockman from Boyz II Men stated that Clark was the only one who understood that music transcends race. His co-star, Seacrest told CNN’s reporters that Clark was one of his idols and was privileged to be on television with him every New Year’s Eve for the past six years.