A legend in the animated sitcom world passed away this week, leaving longtime fans shocked at the news.
According to Breitbart, Johnny Hardwick, the voice of the iconic Dale Gribble character in the hit Fox animated show "King of the Hill," died at age 64.
Authorities do not believe foul play was suspected in Hardwick's death. Police reportedly discovered his body after a welfare check.
Though "King of the Hill" officially ended in 2010, the animated series garnered a large following, with Hardwick's character, Dale Gribble, one of the most popular characters on the show.
The voice actor started his career in stand-up comedy, playing shows across the country in various venues.
"I'm sad to report that Johnny Hardwick, who was best known as the voice of Dale Gribble on King Of The Hill, has passed away at the age of 64. He was also writer and producer on the show," the Voice Artist's Spotlight wrote.
I'm sad to report that Johnny Hardwick, who was best known as the voice of Dale Gribble on King Of The Hill, has passed away at the age of 64. He was also writer and producer on the show.#RIPJohnnyHardwick pic.twitter.com/I4vljzu8SX
— The Voice Artist's Spotlight #IStandWithSAGAFTRA (@vas_90s) August 10, 2023
Hardwick was originally discovered by the show's creator, Mike Judge, during a performance at the Laugh Factory in Los Angeles. Judge hired him to voice Gribble, which ended up a brilliant decision.
"King of the Hill," a network hit, ran successfully for 13 seasons. Gribble was the comic foil to the show's main character, Hank Hill.
The Fox series portrayed blue-collar life in a suburban Texas town with affectionate satire and deadpan humor, garnering a huge fanbase that has remained loyal even after the show ended in 2010.
Not surprisingly, given Hardwick's and his character's popularity, tributes came pouring in across social media.
"The older I got the less crazy Dale Gribble seemed… I think he was onto something. RIP Johnny Hardwick," one X user wrote.
The older I got the less crazy Dale Gribble seemed… I think he was onto something.
RIP Johnny Hardwick pic.twitter.com/xgYrz6pj2h
— Eric Spracklen🇺🇸 (@EricSpracklen) August 10, 2023
"Thanks for the Let It Be "pocket sand" clip, @Joshua_Is_Zeus. I was just gonna post one myself. I don't think people knew what a talented singer/songwriter Dale Gribble was. Rest easy Johnny; thanks for all the laughs," another X user wrote.