Jay Thomas dies at 69: Remembering the beloved SiriusXM host

Jay Thomas
Jay Thomas

Celebrated comedian, Emmy-winning actor and iconic SiriusXM talent Jay Thomas died Thursday after battling cancer. He was 69.

“Jay was one of a kind, never at a loss for words and filled with so much fun and wonderfully whacky thoughts and behaviour,” his agent and friend Don Buchwald said. 

A tribute show honouring Jay Thomas will broadcast live on Monday, Aug. 28 from 4-6 pm ET on Comedy Greats (Ch. 94).

Born July 12, 1948, in Texas, Thomas started his career as a radio DJ in North Carolina before moving to New York to host a morning show. As an actor, Thomas came to fame on Cheers from 1987-89 and later starring on Murphy Brown from 1989-91. Most recently, he played Marty Grossman on Ray Donovan. Thomas further cemented his place in pop culture history with his annual Christmastime appearance on Late Night with David Letterman, telling the talk show host the same hilarious story about an encounter with Lone Ranger’s Clayton Moore.

But to those of us at SiriusXM, Thomas was more than a comic: he was a colleague, friend and mentor, a radio original from his first broadcast of The Jay Thomas Show in 2005. Thank you, Jay, for the endless laughs.

Below, see how Thomas’ SiriusXM family is honouring his memory.

Thomas is survived by his wife Sally and sons Sam, Jake and J.T.