By Adam S. Levy – Radar Staff Writer
Jimmy Kimmel‘s charming uncle, Frank Potenza, died Tuesday at age 77, RadarOnline.com has learned.
A Korean War veteran, the Big Apple native was an officer for the New York City Police Department for 20 years. He also had stints as a security guard at Las Vegas’ Caesar’s Palace and New York’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral prior to making appearances on his nephew’s talk show, which debuted in 2003.
On Twitter, Kimmel, whose show returns September 6, wrote: “thank you for your kind words about a very kind man – my Uncle Frank – who passed away this morning.”
He also re-tweeted a number of kind words followers had left for him on the sad summer day.
His ex, comedienne Sarah Silverman, wrote: “RIP the beloved Uncle Frank. NYC cop, security guard, father to 3, husband to 1, & Uncle to everyone.”
Potenza was “beloved by his coworkers and considered an uncle to all,” ABC said in a statement Tuesday; a rep for the show added that Potenza’s “kindness and humor will be missed by everyone he touched.”
Potenza is survived by three daughters, and a newborn granddaughter named Franki.
At this time, there’s no word on the cause of death.