Canadian actor Jahmil French, known for his work on Degrassi: The Next Generation and Soundtrack, has passed away at the age of 29. The news comes as a heart-wrenching shock to fans and Jahmil’s loved ones and colleagues, who have taken to social media to share moving tributes to the young actor.
Earlier today, Soundtrack creator Joshua Safran tweeted, “I can confirm my good friend, co-worker, and all around inspiration, Jahmil French, passed away yesterday. Only posting because I see the story getting out there. I will have more to say about him later.” Safran explained that, at the present moment, they are all just trying to process the devastating news.
In an official statement, Jahmil’s agent wrote, “It is with a heavy heart that I confirm the passing of a dear friend and client Jahmil French. He will be remembered by many for his passion for the arts, his commitment to his craft, and his vibrant personality. I ask that you keep his family and friends in your thoughts and prayers at this difficult time.” At this time, the cause of death is not publicly known.
Former Degrassi co-star, Jessica Tyler, shared her heartbreak in a lengthy post, noting that she and Jahmil (and the rest of the cast) grew up together, and have so many memories to look back on.
“Though not all of us have kept in case contact since Degrassi ended -- and not for any reason other than the simple fact that time and life go on -- at the end of the day, we are a family. Always have been, always will be. We are bound together, forever, by the unique experience we call Degrassi. A place that many of us would call home to this day.”
“Your kindness and bright light will not be forgotten,” Tyler wrote.
Melinda Shankar, who played Jahmil’s love interest on Degrassi, took to Instagram to share the impact he had on her life as both a co-star and a beloved friend. “@jahmilfrench you will always hold such a special place in my heart. Thank you for being one of the most talented, compassionate, kindest, funniest friends I have.”
Annie Clark, another Degrassi co-star, also shared her thoughts to Twitter, noting that Jahmil was a “true talent and a great friend.” Dylan Everett recalled the first time he met Jahmil adding, "He disarmed you with a smile and his confidence and energy was infectious." All day, more messages of love and heartbreak were poured out in honour of the actor.
Rest in peace, Jahmil. You will be missed.
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