Terry Jones, one of the founding members of Monty Python, has died after a four year battle with Dementia.
The director of three Monthy Python movies, who also played Sir Bedevere in the Holy Grail, was suffering from a rare form of dementia known as Frontotemporal Dementia, he was 77 when he passed on Tuesday.
Fellow Python, Michael Palin, led the tributes describing Jones as “one of the funniest writer-performers of his generation.” He added, “Terry was one of my closest, most valued friends. He was kind, generous, supportive, and passionate about living life to the full.”
Another Python icon, John Cleese, wrote on Twitter of his “many talents and… endless enthusiasm.” He also stated that he thought the Life of Brian was Jones’s “greatest gift” to us all.
Just heard about Terry J
It feels strange that a man of so many talents and such endless enthusiasm, should have faded so gently away…
Of his many achievements, for me the greatest gift he gave us all was his direction of 'Life of Brian'. Perfection
Two down, four to go
— John Cleese (@JohnCleese) January 22, 2020
Jones was born in Wales but lived most of his life in England. He studied English Literature at Oxford University, where he met Michael Palin. Monty Pythons Flying Circus debuted in 1969, with Jones often performing the role of a straight man or dressing up as an older woman, two positions he excelled at playing.
His movie directorial debut came in 1975 when he and Terry Gilliam co-directed the Holy Grail, with Jones also playing the role of Sir Bedevere.
In an interview in 2011 with WalesOnline Jones was asked what he’d like to see on his headstone. He responded, “Maybe a description of me as a writer of children’s books or some of my academic stuff — maybe as the man who restored Richard II’s reputation.”
He added: “He was a terrible victim of 14th-century political spin, you know. I think those are my best bits.”
Many folks posted their condolences and respect to the comedy genius. Steve Martin posted his “salute to Terry Jones.”
OMG (Oh my God), so funny. Salute to Terry Jones. https://t.co/1SK3dRwspf
— Steve Martin (@SteveMartinToGo) January 22, 2020
John Oliver posted a simple message, “Terry Jones was the absolute best.”
Terry Jones was the absolute best
— John Oliver (@iamjohnoliver) January 22, 2020
Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, also sent his condolences.
A beloved comedian, a brilliant writer & director, and a creative powerhouse – Terry Jones was one of a kind. Sending my condolences to his family, friends, and legions of fans around the world. We’ll miss you, Terry.
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) January 22, 2020
RIP Terry Jones.
What is Frontotemporal Dementia?
FTD is a form of dementia that affects the front and sides of the brain, causing problems with behavior and language. It tends to develop slowly, causing gradual changes to the brain over several years. Dementia tends to affect people over 65, but FTD generally starts at a younger age, usually between 45 and 65.