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FILE- In this Sept. 15, 1982, file photo, cast members of the television series "M*A*S*H" from left, William Christopher, Harry Morgan, Mike Farrell, Alan Alda, and Jamie Farr, take a break on the set during taping in Los Angeles. Christopher died Saturday, Dec. 31, 2016. He was 84. (AP Photo/Wally Fong, File)

'M*A*S*H' star William Christopher has died at age 84


"M*A*S*H" star William Christopher died Saturday morning at the age of 84, his agent Robert Malcom told CNN

Christopher, who was best known for his role as Father Francis Mulcahy on the 1970s TV show "M*A*S*H," was diagnosed with cancer more than a year ago. 

The star's son, John Christopher, said his father wasn't doing well several weeks ago. He had been in hospice since the beginning of the week.

Christopher died peacefully in his Pasadena, California home with his wife Barbara by his side. 

Christoper launched his acting career New York City, appearing in several off-Broadway shows, according to CNN. 

But the actor gained notoriety for his role on "M*A*S*H," which premiered in 1972 and ran until 1983. 

The show was set during the Korean War and the characters often used humor to escape from the realities of war. 

"Everyone adored him," said fellow "M.A.S.H." actor Loretta Swit. "A great sense of humor and a great humanitarian. He became TV's quintessential padre as Father Mulcahy on M.A.S.H. It was the most perfect casting ever known."

After "M*A*S*H," Christopher went on voice Angel Smurf on "The Smurfs" and played Father Tobias on the soap opera "Days of Our Lives." 

Many paid tribute to the late actor on social media. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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