James Avery: Death Certificate Says He Had Severe Medical Issues Before he Died

January 13, 2014 Updated: July 18, 2015

James Avery, the actor who played Uncle Phil on the “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” had serious medical problems before his death.

Avery died on Dec. 31, 2013, in Glendale, Calif., while he was at the hospital, it was reported.

According to celebrity news website TMZ, Avery had “severe medical problems” before he died.

He suffered from severe coronary heart disease along with kidney disease and type-2 diabetes, the website reported.

Officials said he died of cardiorespiratory arrest, meaning his heart stopped.

He died about seven weeks after he underwent bypass surgery.

Other “Fresh Prince” stars, including Will Smith and Alfonso Ribeiro, offered their condolences.

“Some of my greatest lessons in Acting, Living and being a respectable human being came through James Avery,” Smith wrote on Facebook last Sunday. “Every young man needs an Uncle Phil. Rest in Peace.”

Ribeiro wrote on Facebook: “The world has lost a truly special man. I am very saddened to say that James Avery has passed. Even though he played my father on TV, he was a wonderful father figure to me in life. He will be deeply missed.”