‘Judge Judy’ Announcer Jerry Bishop dies At 84

According to TMZ, the longtime announcer on Judge Judy passed away on Tuesday (April 21) of heart disease.

Judge Judy paid tribute to her co-star in a statement, saying, “Jerry Bishop has been the voice of our program for 24 years. Everybody loved him. He had a golden heart and generous spirit. I adored him and will miss him.”

Jerry served as the announcer for Judge Judy since its first season in 1996. He went on to appear in thousands of episodes — 1,830 to be exact, per IMBD — remaining the announcer on the show up until his death.

The Connecticut native was also a veteran Los Angeles radio host for three decades. During his time on-air in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s, Jerry interviewed the likes of Frank Sinatra

Steve McQueen, and Natalie Wood.

Jerry additionally lent his voice to commercials and did some voiceover work, including serving as the voice of the Disney Channel for 15 years.

“Jerry was far more than a client, he was a friend and the best friend that anybody could ever have,” said Arlene Thornton

, Jerry’s agent of 35 years. “He was a prince and a mensch but he was truly family.”

Jerry is survived by his daughters Karen RosenbloomMichelle Carriker and Stephanie Blume. His wife Velma, whom he was married to for 51 years, died in 2007, according to The Hollywood Reporter.