Saved by the Bell actors and fans share moving tributes to late co-star Dustin Diamond

The 90s sitcom star passed away on Monday

Dustin Diamond visits "Extra" at Universal Studios Hollywood on May 16, 2016 in Universal City, California
(Image credit: Photo by Noel Vasquez/Getty Images)

Saved by the Bell actor Dustin Diamond has sadly passed away aged 44 after battling cancer. 

Last month, the actor's team announced that the TV star, who played student Samuel ‘Screech’ Powers in the popular sitcom, had been diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer. It has now been announced that Dustin tragically passed away on Monday. 

As reported by Us Weekly, Dustin’s publicist confirmed to the publication that, “We are saddened to confirm Dustin Diamond’s passing on Monday, February 1st, 2021 due to carcinoma. He was diagnosed with this brutal, relentless form of malignant cancer only three weeks ago.”

“In that time, it managed to spread rapidly throughout his system; the only mercy it exhibited was its sharp and swift execution. Dustin did not suffer. He did not have to lie submerged in pain. For that, we are grateful”.  

After the devastating news of his passing became known, heartfelt tributes have been flooding in from co-stars and fans, shocked by the loss of such a talented actor. 

Saved by the Bell's executive producer Peter Engel reportedly told Us Weekly, “It’s a sad, sad day”, revealing that Dustin’s approach to his scenes “would make [him] laugh so much”. 

“He had me laughing for 11 years and I’m laughing now remembering. It makes me feel better,” Engel revealed. 

Whilst co-star Mark-Paul Gosselaar took to Twitter to share his sadness at Dustin’s passing. He wrote, ‘Deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Dustin Diamond, a true comedic genius. My sincere condolences to his family and friends. Looking back at our time working together, I will miss those raw, brilliant sparks that only he was able to produce. A pie in your face, my comrade.’

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Fellow co-star Mario Lopez echoed his statement, tweeting, ‘Dustin, you will be missed my man. The fragility of this life is something never to be taken for granted. Prayers for your family will continue on…’ 

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His former colleagues were not the only ones paying tribute to the star in the wake of this tragedy, however. On Twitter, fans of the show were quick to share their own memories of watching Dustin in Saved by the Bell and the impact he made on their lives.

Actor Eric West declared, ‘Everyone my age grew up watching Dustin Diamond in 'Saved by the Bell’. Screech was hilarious! I’m sorry to hear about his passing today. Dustin will always be a TV icon because ‘Saved by the Bell’ will live on and on. Rest well.’

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Whilst another fan revealed, ‘So sad to hear the news that Dustin Diamond has passed away. Saved By The Bell was one of my absolute favourites growing up, and it wouldn't have been the same without Screech.’

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And another shared that the actor’s Saved by the Bell character was their ‘favorite’ when they were able to watch the show. 

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Our thoughts are with Dustin Diamond's family and friends at this difficult time.