Jerry Doyle, a nationally syndicated talk show host and popular television actor, died Wednesday and is being remembered fondly by friends.
Best known for his role as Michael Garibaldi on the Emmy Award-winning TV series “Babylon 5,” Doyle was born in Boston, but grew up in Brooklyn after being adopted. He trained as a jet pilot at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
The mercurial actor made his TV debut on the CBS series “Moonlighting” in the 1980s, before finding his muse on the Talk Radio Network, taking over as “The Savage Network” host in 2012.
Doyle, 60, was found unresponsive in his Las Vegas home, according to police reports. There is no official cause of death yet.
Jim Watkins, an American Media Institute director who knew Doyle, paid tribute to him: “Jerry liked to play hard and live hard, and he loved women and fast cars. And he loved to gamble,” Watkins said.
“He made a fortune on Wall Street, too. He was just one of those guys. It didn’t matter what career he got into, whether it was Wall Street, whether it was politics, writing, movies, acting and then talk radio. Everywhere he went, he had success. He was a good guy.”
At one time, more than 350 radio stations carried Doyle’s Las Vegas-produced talk show, which debuted in 2001, and at one point was considered one of the largest talk shows in syndication by Talkers magazine. He was also a failed congressional candidate in California.
"I never realized that growing up in Brooklyn, flying jets, working on Wall Street and starring in a sci-fi series was the prerequisite for the fast-paced demands of talk radio," Doyle himself once said in a studio-produced biography. “But, if that’s what it takes to succeed, I'm glad I did it all."
Online, "Babylon 5" creator J. Michael Straczynski released a statement that said: "Regardless of whatever was going on in his life, whether it was marital issues, a broken arm, forced couch-surfing with Bruce and Andreas, or other problems, he never once pulled a prima donna on us; he showed up every day on time, knew his lines, and insisted that the guest cast live up to the standards of the main cast."
A Doyle co-star, Bruce Boxleitner, tweeted on Thursday that he was "so devastated at the news of the untimely death of my good friend.”