After James Avery tragically passed away on Dec. 31 following complications from surgery, Will Smith has broken his silence to share a tribute to his late Fresh Prince of Bel Air co-star. In a post on his Facebook, Smith shared the last photo taken of him, Avery, and their Fresh Prince co-stars Karyn Parsons, Tatyana Ali, and Alfonso Ribeiro, along with a touching statement about Avery:
Both Ribeiro and Ali also took to social media to pay tribute to Avery:
I'm deeply saddened to say that James Avery has passed away. He was a second father to me. I will miss him greatly. pic.twitter.com/UrW0EeBFbO— Alfonso Ribeiro (@alfonso_ribeiro) January 1, 2014
James was my teacher my protector & the most magnificent actor. We're feeling his loss very deeply. He'll always be apart of me #JamesAvery— Tatyana Ali (@TatyanaAli) January 1, 2014
Avery passed away at a Los Angeles hospital on New Year's Eve following a recent open heart surgery. He was 68.