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Home / Ryan O'Neil

Reports: Actor Ryan O’Neal died of congestive heart failure

Oscar-nominated actor Ryan O’Neal, known for his pairings with Barbra Streisand in the films “What’s Up, Doc?” and “The Main Event,” and with his daughter Tatum in “Paper Moon,” died from congestive heart failure, according to published reports.

O’Neal’s death certificate, obtained this week by both the New York Post and the Daily Mail, said the actor suffered from cardiomyopathy for years before he died on Dec. 8 at age 82.

Cardiomyopathy is a disease of the heart muscle that affects its size, shape and structure, the British Heart Foundation states. The illness is usually inherited.

The three main types of cardiomyopathy cited by the British Heart Foundation are: hypertrophic, where the heart wall is thickened; dilated, where the heart muscle becomes stretched and thin; and arrhythmogenic right ventricular, where the heart muscle cells cannot be kept together.

The Cleveland Clinic defined congestive heart failure as a long-term condition the occurs when a heart can’t pump blood well enough to give your body a normal supply.

The watch commander at the LA County Medical Examiner Department contacted by City News Service on Friday declined to comment on O’Neal’s cause of death.

His son, sportscaster Patrick O’Neal, announced his father’s death on social media, saying Ryan O’Neal died peacefully “with his loving team by his side supporting him and loving him as he would us.”

The actor gained popularity on the 1960s TV show “Peyton Place”‘ and became one of the biggest movie stars of the 1970 after he co-starred with Ali MacGraw in the 1970 film “Love Story,” which earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor.

His other notable roles included “Barry Lyndon,” “A Bridge Too Far,” “The Driver, “Partners” and “Tough Guys Don’t Dance.”

O’Neal was also known for his decades-long romance with Farrah Fawcett, who died in 2009 after a protracted battle with cancer. It was O’Neal himself who broke the news of Fawcett’s death as he tearfully left the Santa Monica hospital where she was being treated.

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