Harold Ramis—best known for his contributions to Ghostbusters, Caddyshack and Animal House—has died. The actor, writer and director has struggled with health-related issues from an autoimmune disease since 2010, according to The Chicago Tribune. Ramis was 69.
Ramis got his start in Chicago, where he made his first step into comedy at the famous Second City comedy troupe. He was a performer and head writer for the legendary SCTV sketch comedy show in the 1970s. Later, Ramis’ writing contributions to the comedy world include several staples: the previously mentioned Animal House and Ghostbusters, in which Ramis starred as the iconic Dr. Egon Spengler, as well as Stripes and Groundhog Day. He also directed the original National Lampoon’s Vacation film. Recently, Ramis appeared in the Judd Apatow comedy Knocked Up as Ben’s dad, as well as a spot in Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story.
”Harold Ramis and I together did the National Lampoon Show off Broadway, Meatballs, Stripes, Caddyshack, Ghostbusters and Groundhog Day,” longtime collaborator Bill Murray told Time. “He earned his keep on this planet. God bless him.”
He is survived by his wife, Erica Mann Ramis, and children Violet Stiel, Julian and Daniel.