Who Was Richard Belzer?

TW: Mention of Suicide


Imari McGhee, News Editor

Belzer was an American actor, comedian, and author. He was born on August 14, 1944, in Massachusetts. He endured a rough childhood. When he was 18, his mother died from breast cancer- four years later, his dad committed suicide, in which his eldest brother also committed suicide when he was 73 by jumping off from his 11th-floor building. Belzer himself had testicular cancer; he survived. Since he was in love with dogs and rescued some of his own, he became a part of the New York City Animal League. https://nypost.com/2023/02/19/richard-belzer-comedian-and-law-order-star-dead-at-78/He was also involved with campaigns to end gun violence. He was 78 years with a promising future in any endeavor that he came across. He touched many lives and influenced many young people’s futures.

Richard Belzer died on Sunday in his home in Bozouls in Southwest France; a friend of Belzer had told The Hollywood Reporter that he had a lot of health issues and that his last words were, “***  you mother ***”. In his lifetime, he had experienced love twice and had had the pleasure of having 2 stepchildren; he did not have children of his own. After graduating from Fairfield Warde High School, he worked as a reporter for the “Bridgeport Post” for a while. Following that, he enrolled in Dean College in Franklin, Massachusetts, but was expelled after taking part in student protests. So he gave a number of jobs a shot. Richard Belzer played the role of Detective John Munch for 23 years on 11 different TV shows, becoming almost synonymous with the name. It was the first time one actor played the same fictional character in 11  television shows. In fact, he played the character for 22 consecutive seasons – seven seasons in “Homicide” and 15 seasons in “Law & Order: SVU.” He has been nominated for the People’s Choice Awards and The Festival Award.

His net worth was $16 million dollars. Belzer’s family needed time to process his death and it came out of nowhere. Richard’s family states in an interview, “We have had a delay in making a statement in regards to his passing because, although he did have several health issues that had been difficult but not terminal, he experienced quite a sudden decline in health that caught us completely off guard, which lead to his passing,” according to People.com. Luckily, he died peacefully in his sleep with no complications at his home in France. He left such an example for young inspiring entrepreneurs and actors in the entertainment industry and will be remembered for all of the love and joy that he spread throughout the world. RIP to the legend.