(NEXSTAR) – “Sopranos” star Tony Sirico, known by fans of the beloved HBO mobster series as Peter Paul “Paulie Walnuts” Gaultieri, has died at the age of 79.
His brother, Robert Sirico, said in a statement Friday evening, “It is with great sadness, but with incredible pride, love and a whole lot of fond memories, that the family of Gennaro Anthony “Tony” Sirico wishes to inform you of his death on the morning of July 8, 2022.”
The cause of Siricos death wasn’t immediate clear.
Longtime “Soprano’s” costar Michael Imperioli, who played the role of Christopher Moltisanti, mourned Sirico’s passing in an Instagram post Friday.
“It pains me to say that my dear friend, colleague and partner in crime, the great TONY SIRICO has passed away today,” Imperioli wrote. “Tony was like no one else: he was as tough, as loyal and as big hearted as anyone i’ve ever known.”
Sirico was also known for his roles in “Goodfellas,” “Mighty Aphrodite,” “Cafe Society” and others.
Sirico, a Brooklyn, New York native, is survived by his two children, grandchildren, siblings, and many other relatives, his family said.
Robert Sirico, who is a Catholic priest, will lead a celebration of his brother’s life at the Basilica of Regina Pacis in Brooklyn on Wednesday morning. The family says that they are deeply grateful for “the many expressions of love, prayer and condolences” but are requesting privacy to grieve.
The family requests that any memorial donations be made to Wounded Warriors, St. Jude’s Hospital and the Acton Institute.