The late “Sopranos” and “Goodfellas” alum Tony Sirico has received tributes from his former costars.
Sirico died Friday at age 79. His brother Robert confirmed Sirico’s death in a Facebook post.
“It is with great sadness, but with incredible pride, love and a whole lot of fond memories, that the family of Gennaro Anthony “Tony” Sirico wishes to inform you of his death on the morning of July 8, 2022,” the post reads.
His “Sopranos” co star Michael Imperioli was one of the first to announce and respond to the news of Sirico’s passing.
“It pains me to say that my dear friend, colleague and partner in crime, the great TONY SIRICO has passed away today. Tony was like no one else: he was as tough, as loyal and as big hearted as anyone i’ve ever known,” Imperioli wrote in an Instagram post. “I was at his side through so much: through good times and bad. But mostly good. And we had a lot of laughs. We found a groove as Christopher and Paulie and I am proud to say I did a lot of my best and most fun work with my dear pal Tony. I will miss him forever. He is truly irreplaceable. I send love to his family, friends and his many many fans. He was beloved and will never be forgotten. Heartbroken today.”
Steven Van Zandt, who played Silvio Dante in “The Sopranos,” took to Twitter to express condolences.
“RIP Tony Sirico. Legendary. Silvio’s best buddy “Paulie Walnuts” in “The Sopranos, Frankie “The Fixer’s” older brother Antonino, “Father Tony” Tagliano in Lilyhammer,” Van Zandt wrote. “A larger than life character on and off screen. Gonna miss you a lot my friend. Deepest condolences to the family.”
RIP Tony Sirico. Legendary. Silvio’s best buddy “Paulie Walnuts” in The Sopranos, Frankie “The Fixer’s” older brother Antonino “Father Tony” Tagliano in Lilyhammer. A larger than life character on and off screen. Gonna miss you a lot my friend. Deepest condolences to the family. pic.twitter.com/pAkDnqfLEs
Stevie Van Zandt
(@StevieVanZandt) July 8, 2022
“I adore Tony Sirico. A stand up guy who always had my back and who loved my children and my parents,” Lorraine Bracco shared on Instagram. “I have a lifetime of memories with Tony— starting with Goodfellas to The Sopranos and way beyond— but my God, did we have fun doing the Bensonhurst Spelling Bee—I’m still laughing. I hope he’s in heaven cracking everybody up now. Love you, my Pal…rest in peace.”
Jamie Lynn-Sigler, who played Meadow Soprano alongside Sirico’s Paulie Walnuts, expressed fond memories of her co-star.
“Oh Tony. I’m so heartbroken. I loved you so much. I have never been able to walk into a room that you were in without you giving me an enormous hug, drenching me in your cologne, and making sure I knew any man that came near me would have to answer to you first,” she wrote on Instagram. “You were SUCH a phenomenal actor. Stealing every scene you were in. You were tough, and strong, yet sweet and a real artist. There will never ever be anyone like you. I feel so lucky to have known you and been loved by you.