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Jalopnik: Billy Mays, TV Pitchman, Dead At 50 [Obituaries]

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Billy_Mays_TV.jpgAccording to his son's Twitter feed, TV pitchman Billy Mays, famous for hawking numerous car products including "The Ding King," was found dead today in his Tampa home at the age of 50.

There's no word on the cause of death but his trademark giant beard and big pitches will be missed. The death came only a day after being in a near-crash on a return flight to Tampa, Florida. The passing of Mays was confirmed by his son's Twitter feed. The Ding King, sadly, is gone, and with him, his famed catch-phrase, "Billy Mays here." [Twitter]

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What!??? is this a joke???

Well i guess they say celebrities die in 3s. and this is the third.

4th...Ed McMahon was the first last week..

R

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4th...Ed McMahon was the first last week..

R

5th if you wanna count David Carradine.

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Huh...I thought posted earlier...

Certainly unexpected. I preferred his commercials to Vince.

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Billy Mays was a very energetic man on screen, the type of pitchman just about every company wants.

And I'm glad Vince is still around, someone needs to beat up hookers.

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The guy's voice was like fingernails on a chalkboard to me - I couldn't hit the mute button fast enough.

But 50 is way too young to die - no matter who you are.

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Philly lost two beloved icons within the past 2 months (maybe a tad longer'n that) Harry Kalas (surrogate Dad to legions of Phillies fans) and Channel 6's SportsCaster, Gary Papa. Both men of decency, humor and integrity.

The Billie Mays news was and is a stunner. I felt that he was really putting his back into his pitches, so much so, that I was afraid he was going to blow an "O"-ring. (some sort of cardiac or cerebral event

Gentlemen, we hardly knew ye.

Our time is too short here. We must use it wisely.

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And I'm glad Vince is still around, someone needs to beat up hookers.

I wonder how much hooker blood a ShamWOW can soak up.

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So I guess the Pitchmen show is done for...just for kicks, I watched a few Billy Mays clips on You Tube earlier... I like his ALL SHOUTING all the time style..some of the products were pretty funny....was looking around for an informercial for skin tag removers..

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I go "off the grid" for a weekend, and this is the first thing I find out about. Billy Mays was an icon.

CASH

IN

THE

TRASH!

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Speaking of infomercial pitchmen, anyone ever watch Klee Irwin's 'Dual Action Cleanse' infomercials? They always seem to be on here on Saturday mornings..the pitchman, Klee Irwin is very creepy as he describes colon issues in detail, which I find fascinating, as I'm prone to IBS and other bad bowel fun (nothing like violent diharrea to mess up your day, as it did this afternoon).

Dual Action Cleanse

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Did everyone hear that Billy Mays died in his sleep last night?

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I remember when I first saw his ads a few years ago, I thought he was a retired pro baseball player...then I realized that was Willy Mays.

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The guy's voice was like fingernails on a chalkboard to me - I couldn't hit the mute button fast enough.

I used to feel the same way, until I started watching Pitchmen. Sure, its a TV show, so they can cut the good stuff together, but I felt you got a good feel for how he was, and was certainly an interesting character. He had great banter with Sully and was obviously a quicker wit than most people give him credit for. Also, keep in mind he had fairly humble beginnings... learning to hawk on the Atlantic City boardwalk... so I get an idea of where he's been... so he demonstrates that the American dream, while harder and harder to achieve, is still alive.

So, love or loathe the commercials, give the man some credit.

I'm just absolutely in shock... and as a potential entrepreneur, this death actually moves me more than MJ, Farrah, Ed or Carradine.

I'm also surprised Gary Papa passed... I missed that.

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Philly lost two beloved icons within the past 2 months (maybe a tad longer'n that) Harry Kalas (surrogate Dad to legions of Phillies fans) and Channel 6's SportsCaster, Gary Papa. Both men of decency, humor and integrity.

Harry Kalas was very local to me - I used to see him in my local Wawa from time to time.

As we speak, the book about his life is selling at that same store.

I felt like most folks around here when it came to Gary Papa - like I knew him personally for years.

He just seemed like one hell of a good guy, and though I expected the news of his death, it was still a jolt.

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Harry Kalas was very local to me - I used to see him in my local Wawa from time to time.

As we speak, the book about his life is selling at that same store.

I felt like most folks around here when it came to Gary Papa - like I knew him personally for years.

He just seemed like one hell of a good guy, and though I expected the news of his death, it was still a jolt.

My Dad was given a copy of that book yesterday as a gift, yep, purchased at Wawa. I hadn't before realized, completely, just how enthusiastic a follower of the Phillies, how big a fan of Harry is Dad. I was amazed and gratified when last year the Phillies took it all. Personally, for myself, the hometown club winning was nice and all but seeing the gleam in Dad's eyes was as seeing him as an 8 year-old on Christmas morning.

We were all gathered for a cookout honoring the memory of my late-Mother. She died exactly one year ago today, in about two hours from now, and everything we did fit the solemnity of the occasion while at the same time being a celebration of her 72 years among her loved-ones. Very human and very spiritual.

I saw Harry, on the television as pre-season was winding down in March and I was struck by his gauntness. I figured: Cigarettes. I think Harry was a devote smoker. I rued Sir Walter Raleigh's advocacy of tobacco at that moment once more as Mom herself was a smoker. Right 'til the end. (maybe three weeks of grace)

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No big surprise there.

I was actually quite surprised, given that he has a family, and his age.

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