Rolf Harris, the disgraced entertainer who was convicted of multiple sexual assault offenses, has passed away. He was 93. The former television presenter died at his home earlier this month owing to old-age-related issues and neck cancer.
Harris was convicted of indecent assaults against several women and girls and was sentenced to five years and nine months in prison in 2014. Before that, the Australian presenter was known for hosting children’s TV shows about animals and art.
Disgraced TV Presenter Rolf Harris Dies at 93
UK’s Press Association confirmed Harris’ death. His death certificate, obtained from the registrar at Maidenhead Town Hall, states the cause of his demise as ‘neck cancer’ and ‘frailty of old age’. The former host died at his home in Bray on May 10th.
Harris’ family also announced his death with a statement, “This is to confirm that Rolf Harris recently died peacefully surrounded by family and friends and has now been laid to rest. They ask that you respect their privacy. No further comment will be made.”
The comedian was reported to be quite unwell in the last few months. One of his neighbors earlier revealed in October last year, “Only carers and nurses, who care for him 24 hours, come and go. I’m told he can’t eat anymore.” Another confirmed, “As far as his health goes, yes, he is very ill. But, Rolf keeps going. He’s still around but he’s not well at all.”
Harris Started his Career in the 1950s
Born in Perth, Australia in 1930, Harris shifted to the UK in the early 1950s and graduated from City and Guilds of London Art School with a degree in art. He soon found work with the BBC, which started his television career. He became famous as the host of the shows Animal Hospital and The Rolf Harris Show.
Harris’s empathetic and fun antics particularly got popular among children. He also released a number of songs in his career, including Jake the Peg, Two Little Boys, and Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport. He was tasked with making the official portrait of Queen Elizabeth II for her 80th birthday in 2006.
Before his crimes came to light, he had already been honored with a BAFTA Fellowship, and an OBE, MBE, and CBE by the Queen. He also appeared in the films Run For Your Wife, The Little Convict, Crash Drive, and Web of Suspicion.
Harris was Convicted at the Age of 84
The presenter was found guilty of assaulting multiple women between 1968 and 1986. His offenses came to public light when Jimmy Savile’s sexual assault cases opened up, and paved the way for investigation into the lives of other entertainers.
Harris was 84 when he was scented to prison in 2014. He was released in 2017, but never apologized to his victims. “I’d be in prison serving a sentence for crimes I did not commit if it were not for William’s investigation. It is difficult to put into words the injustice that I feel,” the former television host had claimed at the time.
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