Roy Horn died of complications of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) on Friday, but not before surviving a tiger attack on stage during a Las Vegas show in 2003.
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The onstage attack left the entertainer “a little bit handicapped,” he said in 2013
Horn, who died on Friday at the age 75 of complications from the contagious respiratory virus, was attacked by a 600-pound tiger named Montecore while on stage with his Siegfried & Roy partner, Siegfried Fischbacher, in October 2003. The mauling took place on the entertainer’s 59th birthday.
The attack marked the end of the duo’s run at the Mirage Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, which began in 1990.
Recounting the attack 10 years afterward in a rare interview with Las Vegas Weekly, Horn maintained that the massive tiger was only trying to help him.
“I had high blood pressure at that time, and because of the energy level of the show, I got excited and passed out onstage and fell, unfortunately,” Horn explained. “Montecore looked at me with his big blue eyes and was confused, and so he picked me up by the neck. He brought me to the side so he could attend to me.”
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Siegfried and Roy
The incident landed Horn in the hospital with severe blood loss, and he ended up suffering a stroke.
“Pain is my best friend,” Horn told Las Vegas Weekly in 2013, adding that there was no activity he wished he could do that he was unable to perform due to the attack. “I have to live with it. [But] I am doing pretty well. I am a little bit handicapped, but I’m not an invalid. I can do a lot of things. I can walk, I can go swimming, I can go to the gym, I can go shopping.”
“I am very grateful, every day, for every breath I am taking,” the illusionist added. “That is my message to anyone who has had a stroke or a heart attack: Keep moving. Make progress. Pull yourself together, because you can do it.”
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Siegfried and Roy
Horn wanted to make clear that his injuries were an accident.
“But we need to rectify — he never attacked me,” he said of Montecore. “If a tiger attacks you, you are finished.”
Horn appeared on stage with Fischbacher in 2009 for a “final bow” that included an appearance from Montecore.
On Friday, Fischbacher, 80, said in a statement to ABC that he had lost his “best friend.”
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Siegfried Fischbacher and Roy Horn
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“Today, the world has lost one of the greats of magic, but I have lost my best friend,” Fischbacher said. “From the moment we met, I knew Roy and I, together, would change the world. There could be no Siegfried without Roy, and no Roy without Siegfried.”
“Roy was a fighter his whole life including during these final days,” Fischbacher continued. “I give my heartfelt appreciation to the team of doctors, nurses and staff at Mountain View Hospital who worked heroically against this insidious virus that ultimately took Roy’s life.”
Horn tested positive for COVID-19 in April.
In Memoriam 2020: Remembering the stars we lost [via Photo services]
Stars we lost in 2020
Brian Howe, former frontman for the British rock group Bad Company, died May 6. He was 66.
Florian Schneider, the co-founder of the German electronic band Kraftwerk, died May 6. He was 73.
Irrfan Khan, the wide-eyed actor who enjoyed art house acclaim in his native India and crossover-success with Hollywood roles including “Life of Pi,” “Jurassic World” and “Inferno,” died April 29. He was 53.
Grammy-nominated gospel singer Troy Sneed, died April 27. He was 52.
Ashley ‘Minnie’ Ross
Little Women: Atlanta’s Ashley ‘Minnie’ Ross died April 27. She was 34.
Dimitri Diatchenko, best known for his role in the 2012 film “Chernobyl Diaries,” died April 25. He was 52.
Hamilton Frederick Bohannon, known professionally as Bohannon was a band leader and one of the leading figures in 1970s disco music, died April 24. He was 78.
Frederick Thomas, best known as his rap alias Fred The Godson, died April 23. He was 35.
Derek Jones, the guitarist for post-hardcore rock band Falling in Reverse, died April 21. He was 35.
Jerry Bishop, famed announcer for the television show “Judge Judy,” died of heart disease on April 21. He was 84.
Photographer Peter Beard, world-renowned for his beautiful and intimate images of Africa and African wildlife, died April 19. He was 82.
Christophe, a celebrated French crooner best known for his ballads “Aline” and “Les Mots Bleus,” died April 16. He was 74.
Brian Dennehy, the winner of two Tonys in a career that also spanned films including “Tommy Boy,” “First Blood” and “Cocoon,” and television, died April 15. He was 81.
Chynna Rogers, the hip-hop artist who first turned heads on the modeling runway and then with her talent as a rapper, died April 8. She was 25.
John Prine, the raspy-voiced singer-songwriter whose homespun, witty and insightful country-folk tunes influenced legions of musicians in a career that spanned five decades, died April 7. He was 73.
Allen Garfield, an actor who appeared in movies like “Nashville” and “The Stunt Man,” died April 7. He was 80.
Hal Willner, a record producer famed for his left-of-center tribute albums and concerts, and as the long-time sketch music producer for “Saturday Night Live,” died April 7. He was 64.
James Drury, an actor best remembered as the stolid, black-hatted title character of the long-running NBC western “The Virginian,” died April 6. He was 85.
Thomas L. Miller
Thomas L. Miller, a longtime TV producer known for hits including “Family Matters,” “Full House,” “Perfect Strangers” and “Step by Step,” died April 5. He was 79.
Shirley Douglas, a Canadian actor and activist, died April 5. She was at 86
Actor Jay Benedict, best known for his roles in 1986’s “Aliens,” 2012’s “The Dark Knight Rises” and the U.K. TV series “Emmerdale,” died April 4. He was 68.
Legendary jazz guitarist John “Bucky” Pizzarelli, who played for presidents at the White House and with music icons including Paul McCartney, died March 1. He was 94.
Ellis Marsalis Jr.
Legendary jazz pianist and teacher Ellis Marsalis Jr., the patriarch of New Orleans’ great musical family, died April 1. He was 85.
Adam Schlesinger, a musician and songwriter highly regarded for his work as a member of Fountains of Wayne and an Emmy-winning songwriter for TV’s “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” died April 1. He was 52.
Tomie dePaola, a children’s author and illustrator known for his book “Strega Nona,” died March 30. He was 85.
Ken Shimura, a comedian who was a fixture on Japanese television for decades, died March 29. He was 70.
Alan Merrill, the guitarist, vocalist and songwriter, best known for writing “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll, ” died March 29. He was 69.
Joe Diffie, a consistent country-music hitmaker throughout the Nineties, died March 29. He was 61.
David Schramm, a stage actor who was also a star on the NBC comedy “Wings,” died March 28. He was 73.
Maria Mercader, a longtime journalist and CBS News producer and talent executive died March 26. She was 54.
Mark Blum, a veteran character actor who starred in the films “Desperately Seeking Susan” and “Crocodile Dundee,” as well as the recent TV series “You,” died March 26. He was 69.
Bill Rieflin, a remarkably versatile drummer whose work over the past 30 years spanned Ministry, R.E.M., Swans, Nine Inch Nails and King Crimson, among many others, died March 24. He was 59.
Stuart Gordon, best known as the filmmaker behind such cult classics as “Re-Animator” and “From Beyond,” died March 24. He was 72.
Terrence McNally, a four-time Tony Award-winning playwright, died March 24. He was 81.
Manu Dibango, the pioneering Cameroonian jazz musician whose song “Soul Makossa” was interpolated in Michael Jackson’s hit “Wanna Be Starting Something,” died March 24. He was 86.
Albert Uderzo, the French comic book artist and scriptwriter best known for his work on Astérix, died March 24. He was 92.
Italian actress Lucia Bosè, mostly known for appearing in films from acclaimed Italian directors such as Michelangelo Antonioni and Federico Fellini, died March 23. She was 89.
Eric Weissberg, half of the duo that recorded “Dueling Banjos” for the film “Deliverance” in 1973, resulting in an unlikely smash hit single and album, died March 22. He was 80.
Three times Grammy winner Kenny Rogers known for his song “The Gambler” died March 19. He was 81.
Lyle Waggoner, known for his work on “The Carol Burnett Show” and “Wonder Woman,” died March 17. He was 84.
Actor Stuart Whitman, an Oscar nominee for his role as a convicted child molester in the 1961 movie “The Mark,” died March 16. He was 92.
Max von Sydow
Swedish actor Max von Sydow, who made his name in the films of Ingmar Bergman before featuring in international hits like “Game of Thrones,” died March 8. He was 90.
Mart Crowley, the author who wrote the landmark play “The Boys in the Band,” died March 7. He was 84.
James Lipton, an actor-turned-drama-school-dean who got hundreds of Hollywood luminaries to open up about their life and art and became an unlikely celebrity himself as the longtime host of “Inside the Actors Studio,” died March 2. He was 93.
Lee Phillip Bell
Lee Phillip Bell, co-creator of popular soap operas “The Young and the Restless’ and “The Bold and The Beautiful,” died February 25. She was 91.
Clive Cussler, the author and maritime adventurer who captivated millions with his best-selling tales of suspense, died February 24. He was 88.
Ben Cooper, a Western star of films and TV like “Johnny Guitar,” “Bonanza,” “Rawhide” and more, died February 24. He was 86.
Diana Serra Cary
Diana Serra Cary, the silent film sensation known as Baby Peggy, died February 24. She was 101.
David Roback, co-founder of the widely celebrated alt-rock group Mazzy Star, died February 24. He was 61.
B. Smith, one of the country’s first high-profile black models who went on to become an author, restaurateur and lifestyle maven, died February 22. She was 70.
Pop Smoke, the rising New York rapper who collaborated with Nicki Minaj, Travis Scott and more, died February 19. He was 20.
Ja’Net DuBois, the actress who played the sassy Willona Woods in the 1970s TV show “Good Times” and sang the theme song to “The Jeffersons,” died February 17. She was 74.
DJ and producer Andrew Weatherall, a titan of underground dance music, died February 17. He was 56.
Zoe Caldwell, an esteemed stage, film and television actress who won four Tony Awards, including for her role as opera diva Maria Callas in Master Class, died February 16. She was 86.
Kellye Nakahara, the actress known for playing Nurse Kellye on the long-running sitcom “M*A*S*H,” died February 16. She was 72.
Jason Davis, a voice actor on the Disney Channel show “Recess,” died February 16. He was 35.
Caroline Flack, a well-known television personality and former host of the ITV television series “Love Island” and other shows in Britain, died February 15. She was 40.
Esther Scott, who appeared in “Boyz N The Hood,” voiced Shodu in the “Ewoks” series and guest starred on dozens of TV series, died February 14. She was 66.
Lynn Cohen, the veteran Broadway actress also known to millions for her role as Magda on the HBO series “Sex and the City” and its subsequent movies, died February 14. She was 86.
Paul English, longtime drummer for Willie Nelson, died February 11. He was 87.
Joseph Shabalala, founder and director of the Grammy-winning South African vocal troupe Ladysmith Black Mambazo, died February 11. He was 78.
Robert Conrad, the actor best known for his role in the television show “The Wild Wild West”, died February 8. He was 84.
Paula Kelly, Emmy-nominated actress who appeared in NBC’s “Night Court” and ABC miniseries “The Women of Brewster Place”, died February 8. She was 77.
Ann E. Todd
Ann E. Todd, a former child star in the 1930s and ‘40s who appeared in films such as “Intermezzo” and “All This, and Heaven Too” before making her mark in sitcoms during the ’50s, died February 7. She was 88.
Raphael Coleman, who starred alongside Emma Thompson and Colin Firth in the 2005 film “Nanny McPhee,” died February 7. He was 25.
Kevin Conway, veteran stage and screen actor known for “Gettysburg”, “The Quick and the Dead”, and HBO’s “Oz”, died February 5. He was 77.
Kirk Douglas, actor, producer, director and a star of Hollywood’s golden age, died February 5. He was 103.
Gene Reynolds, six-time Emmy winning producer and director known for co-creating the TV series “MASH,” died February 3. He was 96.
Andy Gill, founding member and guitarist for the British post-punk outfit Gang of Four, died February 1. He was 64.
Mary Higgins Clark
Mary Higgins Clark, best-selling suspense novelist, died January 31. She was 92.
Fred Silverman, longtime television producer and executive behind “All in the Family”, “Soap” and “Hill Street Blues”, died January 30. He was 82.
Jörn Donner, Finnish producer and director whose credits included Ingmar Bergman’s Oscar-winning “Fanny And Alexander”, died January 30. He was 86.
Harriet Frank Jr.
Harriet Frank Jr., Oscar-nominated “Hud” and “Norma Rae” screenwriter, died January 28. She was 96.
Nicholas Parsons, British broadcaster who hosted BBC radio 4’s “Just A Minute” game show for more than 50 years, died January 28. He was 96.
Marj Dusay, veteran soap opera actress, who starred in “Guiding Light”, “Santa Barbara”, “All My Children” and “Days of Our Lives”, died January 28. She was 83.
Reed Mullin, drummer and cofounder of long-running North Carolina hard rock outfit “Corrosion of Conformity”, died January 27. He was 53.
Bob Shane, the last surviving original member of “The Kingston Trio”, whose smooth close harmonies helped transform folk music, died January 26. He was 85.
Emmy-winning actor John Karlen, best known for his work on the television series “Dark Shadows” and “Cagney & Lacey,” died January 22. He was 86.
Terry Jones, the Welsh actor, director, author, historian and the founding member of the seminal comedy group “Monty Python”, died January 21. He was 77.
Jimmy Heath, a Grammy-nominated jazz saxophonist and composer who performed with such greats as Miles Davis and John Coltrane before forming the popular family group the Heath Brothers in middle age, died January 19. He was 93.
Americana singer and songwriter David Olney, whose music was recorded by Linda Ronstadt, Steve Young, Emmylou Harris and others, died January 18. He was 71.
Christopher Tolkien, son of legendary “The Lord of the Rings” author J.R.R. Tolkien, died January 15. He was the editor of his father’s unpublished material, including “The Silmarillion” in 1977 and “The Fall of Gondolin” in 2018. He was 95.
Norma Michaels, a beloved character actress best known for her role as Josephine on “King of Queens”, died January 11. She was 95.
Rocky Johnson, member of the WWE Hall of Fame and father of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, died January 15. He was 75
British film and TV producer Tony Garnett, founder of “Bodyguard” producer World Productions, died January 12. He was 83.
Actor and acting coach Stan Kirsch, best known for his role in the TV series “Highlander,” died January 11. He was 51.
Ivan Passer, a leading figure of the Czech new wave who directed films including “Cutter’s Way,” died January 9. He was 86.
5th Ward Weebie
Rapper 5th Ward Weebie, who was a major player in the distinctive bounce music scene in New Orleans, died January 9. He was 42.
Edd Byrnes, star of the 1950s and ’60s TV hit “77 Sunset Strip” who went on to co-star in the 1978 smash “Grease,” died January 8. He was 87.
Comedy writer Buck Henry, the legendary scribe who co-wrote “The Graduate,” “Catch-22″ and “To Die For” and co-created the TV series “Get Smart,” died January 8. He was 89.
Actor Harry Hains, who played roles in titles including “American Horror Story,” died January 7. He was 27.
Neil Peart, the drummer and lyricist for Rush, died January 7. He was 67.
Elizabeth Wurtzel, who chronicled her struggle with depression in best-selling memoirs that helped spur a boom in confessional writing, turning her into a Gen X celebrity at 26 with the publication of “Prozac Nation,” died January 7. She was 52.
Rapper Lexii Alijai, best known for using her talents to rap over Kehlani’s 2015 hit song “Jealous,” died January 1. She was 21