Chris Cotton, a comedian who performed standup for Comedy Central, has died, the network said. He was 32. The network confirmed Cotton's death in a statement released on social media Wednesday.
"We're devastated by the loss of Chris Cotton — a hilarious comedian, a beloved member of the Comedy Central family and a joy to be around. He will be missed," the statement read.
His cause of death has yet to be released.
We were lucky to have Chris Cotton. Gone far too soon. pic.twitter.com/is1RF3s9uL— Comedy Central (@ComedyCentral) December 11, 2019
The South Philadelphia native had been married to his high school sweetheart, EricaLynn, since 2011. The two were expecting their first child together in February, according to Philadelphia news outlet Billy Penn.
In addition to his work as a standup comedian, Cotton was also known for his work as a writer, having written, produced and appeared in the Comedy Central talk show Every Damn Day and having performed in New York City's Gotham City comedy club. His bits often included riffs about his hometown.
Tributes for Cotton flooded social media shortly after news of his death broke. Nate Dern, a writer for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, called Cotton "a beautiful person with so much love to give."
"Everyone loved him instantly. He regularly made me laugh so hard that I cried. I am honored that I got to work with him and know him. Love you, Chris. Rest In Peace," Dern wrote.
"A few weeks ago, Chris Cotton randomly hit me up to thank me for a gig I got him YEARS ago that led to some other work for him," comic Hannibal Buress wrote. "I was in the middle of booking Isola Fest and booked him during the call. I was psyched to see him this weekend. RIP."
Impractical Jokers star Sal Vulcano also took to Twitter to grieve Cotton's loss. "So sad to hear about Chris Cotton. He was always kind and always real. And I always noticed him helping others get work and get booked. (including myself) His wife is due in February. Heartbreaking," Vulcano wrote.
I spent the day yesterday, Giraldo's bd talking about & remembering my male comrades that died too young & today I hear that Chris Cotton passed. We spent so many times together on @artiequitter & the infamous "Pull Over on the Jersey Turnpike episode". My❤️ can't take it all.— Sue Costello (@suecostello) December 11, 2019
What a terrible night, I am still in shock over the loss of Chris Cotton..he was young, fun and had so much left to do.....Its tragic. My heart goes out to his family pic.twitter.com/pbshhuDoZV— Dave Attell (@attell) December 12, 2019
What a total shit year. Philly lost a great comic and a truly great person. My heart goes out to the family of Chris Cotton and all those close to him. Chris was also about to be a dad. Here’s a link to he and his wife’s Amazon registry:https://t.co/Pf4xk5klfE#ripchriscotton pic.twitter.com/pLszIzePB0— Michelle Biloon (@biloon) December 11, 2019
Man, if you wanna bury a few friends a year, fuck being a gang member. Become a comedian. I can’t believe Chris Cotton is gone. This is a tough one. My heart aches for his wife and his loved ones. That was a really good dude. Heaven just earned them a real one.— Kerry Coddett (@Overfab) December 11, 2019
The comedian also appeared in the 2017 movie Diwal'oween, and wrote and acted in the 2015 web series Carpool Rules.
More recently, he had only just performed at Philadelphia venue South Street's Tattooed Mom on Monday, and also spoke at an anti-violence community chat in South Philadelphia on Friday, Dec. 6.
He was reportedly set to host a comedy showcase in Philadelphia in January; the event has since been reorganized as a memorial.
Cotton also published a book, What My Dad Did: My Theory On Joke Writing, which he said was designed to help guide comedians through the business of comedy while teaching them how to maintain their art.
According to a GoFundMe page that was created for Cotton's family, there will be memorial/comedy shows in both New York City and Philadelphia to celebrate his life. Dates have not yet been announced.
Photo credit: Michael Kovac / Stringer / Getty