Actor Dustin Diamond, best remembered for his role as Samuel “Screech” Powers on Saved by the Bell, has passed away from carcinoma at 44-years-old. Rest in peace.
Screech, Everyone’s Favorite Nerd
Dustin Diamond started his career in the 1987 science-fiction film The Price of Life. His big break came that same year on the show Good Morning, Miss Bliss, which would eventually be retitled Saved by the Bell. Diamond portrayed Samuel “Screech” Powers on Bell, one of the few characters to appear on the show in its entirety, until 1993. On paper, Screech just seemed like a stereotypical nerd character. However, Diamond managed to bring a new, zany energy to the archetypal role. He soon became one of the most popular characters on television – and an unlikely crush for many young women.
Later, Diamon returned as Screech for the ’90s spin-off, Saved by the Bell: The New Class. Sadly, after New Class ended in 2000, the actor found it hard to find work. He did manage to find some work as a reality star, participating in programs like Celebrity Big Brother and Celebrity Fit Club, but little else.
Then, last year, Diamond received a cancer diagnosis from his doctor. Despite a valiant fight, the cancer quickly spread through the actor. His family admitted him to the hospital for the last time, just three weeks before his untimely passing at 44. “In that time, it managed to spread rapidly throughout his system; the only mercy it exhibited was its sharp and swift execution,” the actor’s agent, Roger Paul, stated. Thankfully, Paul also noted that Diamon passed peacefully, without pain.
Since Diamond’s death, many of his friends and former co-stars have released statements…
Rest In Peace Dustin Diamond
In his years out of the limelight, Diamond developed something of a temper, unfortunately. This, coupled with tragic substance abuse issues, led to a prison sentence after a bar fight. Thankfully, later in his life, Diamond turned things around and became a role model. “We are aware that Dustin is not considered reputable by most. He’s had a history of mishaps, of unfortunate events. We want the public to understand that he was not intentionally malevolent,” Paul said.
After Diamond’s death, many co-stars felt nothing but shock. “A lot of people may not understand that you can work with somebody for years — you can be very close, you see this person every day for an entire season of shooting and then once things wrap, the camera stops, you just drift apart,” said actor Mark-Paul Gosselaar. Gosselaar portrayed lead character Zach Morris on Saved by the Bell.
Mario Lopez, who too earned his start on Saved by the Bell, also spoke about Diamond. “Dustin, you will be missed my man. The fragility of this life is something never to be taken for granted. Prayers for your family will continue on…” said Mario Lopez.
“I am deeply saddened by the news of my old co-star @realdustindiamond passing. Life is extremely fragile and it’s something we should never take for granted. God speed Dustin,” added Tiffani Thiessen, another co-star from Saved by the Bell. Rest in peace Dustin Diamond, we will remember you forever.