LOS ANGELES — Legendary US television presenter and producer Dick Clark, known for introducing rock and roll music to millions of Americans, died of a heart attack Wednesday at age 82, his family said.
Clark, famous for shows including “American Bandstand” and “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” suffered a cardiac arrest after being admitted to hospital in Santa Monica, California, on Tuesday.
“Entertainment icon Dick Clark passed away this morning at the age of 82 following a massive heart attack,” said the family statement, released by his publicist Paul Shefrin.
Clark “entered St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica last night for an outpatient procedure. Attempts to resuscitate were unsuccessful,” it added.
The entertainer, whose Dick Clark Productions remains a key force in the industry, was known to generations of US television viewers as “America’s oldest teenager.”
Clark suffered a stroke in 2004 which forced him into retirement, although he continued to appear on the New Year’s Eve special alongside celebrity host Ryan Seacrest.
A New York native, he began his career at 17 and worked his way up to television and radio anchor both there and in Philadelphia — where he became host of its “Bandstand” show in 1956.
He created Dick Clark Productions a year later, taking the show nationwide as “American Bandstand.” The company still produces shows including the Golden Globes, the American Music Awards and the Academy of Country Music Awards.
Clark is survived by his wife, Kari Wigton, and has three children from previous marriages.