LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The legendary entertainer and magician Roy Horn has died of complications from COVID-19, according to his representatives.
13 Action News reported on April 28 that Horn had been diagnosed with the novel coronavirus and was hospitalized.
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However, sources said Horn's health was declining on Friday and he passed away at the age of 75 at MountainView Hospital in northwest Las Vegas.
“Roy was a fighter his whole life, including during these final days. I give my heartfelt appreciation to the team of doctors, nurses and staff at MountainView Hospital who worked heroically against this insidious virus that ultimately took Roy’s life," Siegfried Fischbacher said.
Horn was half of the entertainment duo of Siegfried & Roy. The pair is best known for their show that ran from 1990 to 2003 at the Mirage hotel-casino on the Las Vegas Strip.
“From the moment we met, I knew Roy and I, together, would change the world. There could be no Siegfried without Roy, and no Roy without Siegfried," Fischbacher said.
The show ended in 2003 on Horn's 59th birthday after he was injured on stage by one of the white tigers used in the duo’s act.
It was initially reported by Horn’s publicist that he was responding well to treatment and sent warm wishes to anyone else who had also been stricken.
Horn was born as Uwe Ludwig horn on Oct. 3, 1944, in Nordeham, Germany.
A family friend was the founder of Bremen Zoo and gave Roy access to exotic animals when he was 10.
He met Siegfried while working on a ship and the two began performing together on cruise ships. From there, they moved on to nightclubs across Europe.
The pair got their start in Las Vegas lounges in the late 1960s and began making name a name for themselves by the '70s. They performed at the Tropicana as part of "Folies Bergere" and in "Lido de Paris" at the Stardust hotel-casino.
Their first major Las Vegas show was at New Frontier Hotel & Casino and was produced by Kenneth Feld of Irvin & Kenneth Feld Productions. It began in 1981 and lasted several years until they were hired by Steve Wynn in 1987.
The pair moved to The Mirage in 1990 and became the highest-paid performers on the Las Vegas Strip, performing night after night in front of sold-out crowds. It was the most expensive show in the world at the time and employed more than 260 people when it came to an abrupt end.
— Joe Bartels (@Joe_Bartels) May 9, 2020
After the incident in 2003, they only made one other appearance on stage in 2009 for the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health in Las Vegas. The pair officially retired from show business in 2010, but remained involved in various charities in the Las Vegas valley.
“Roy’s whole life was about defying the odds,” Fischbacher said. “He grew up with very little and became famous throughout the world for his showmanship, flair and his life-long commitment to animal conservation. He had a strength and will unlike anyone I have ever known.”
An outpouring of support was shown on social media and around the valley Friday evening after the famed magician's passing. #RIP #RIPRoyHorn