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'Simpsons' co-creator Sam Simon dies at 59

  • Sam Simon was battling colon cancer
  • 'Simpsons' co-creator has donated to charities all his life
'Simpsons' co-creator Sam Simon dies at 59

"The Simpsons" co-creator Sam Simon passed away Monday, leaving behind a legacy equal parts laughter and kindness.

The Sam Simon Foundation posted an update Monday afternoon with the sad news.


Simon, who made his fortune developing shows such as "The Simpsons" and "The George Carlin Show," reacted to his terminal cancer diagnosis the way he always did to everything else: by giving.

When Simon was diagnosed with terminal colorectal cancer and given a few months to live, he announced in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter that he would donate his fortune to various charities. And how much is it worth? Simon confesses that's he not sure, but an appropriate description would likely be "a lot."

Simon was an active philanthropist for most of his life. In 2002, he founded the Sam Simon Foundation, which focuses on rescue for stray dogs that would otherwise be euthanized. He also established and self-funded the Sam Simon Foundation Feeding Families program in 2011, which is a vegan food bank that helps to feed people and animals in need. The Sam Simon Foundation was estimated at a worth of $23 million as of 2011.

READ MORE: Make your money count! How to donate safely

In addition, Simon has donated large sums to PETA, Save the Children and the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society.

Simon started out as a newspaper cartoonist at Stanford University and worked on several shows before creating "The Simpsons" alongside Matt Groening and James L. Brooks in 1989. He stayed with the show until 1993, but won a total of nine Emmys for his work.

When asked about his decision to donate his money, he said, "One thing is, I get pleasure from it. I love it. I don't feel like it is an obligation. One of the things about animal rights, which is not the only thing that I care about in this world, is that your money can bring success. I see results."

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