Famous magician and tiger-handler Siegfried Fischbacher, one of half of the iconic Siegfried and Roy duo, has died at the age of 81. Fischbacher died on Wednesday in his home in Las Vegas after succumbing to pancreatic cancer. It was reported just days earlier that the stage performer was suffering from the terminal illness. According to Newsweek, Fischbacher had a malignant tumor removed, but the cancer had already spread to other parts of his body. He opted to return home to be cared for there until the time of his passing.
Fischbacher's death comes just eight months after the passing of his longtime stage partner Roy Horn, who died from coronavirus at the age of 75. Fischbacher penned a tribute to his longtime partner and friend after Horn's passing back in May.
"Today, the world has lost one of the greats of magic, but I have lost my best friend," said Siegfried in a statement. "From the moment we met, I knew Roy and I, together, would change the world. There could be no Siegfried without Roy, and no Roy without Siegfried."
Siegfried & Roy became well known for their work on-stage with tigers, ultimately headlining a show at The Mirage in Las Vegas that was known to sell out regularly. Their 13-year run of headlining the venue came to an end in 2003, when an accident with one of the tigers left Horn partially paralyzed.
During his battle with cancer, Fischbacher was reportedly unable to see many of his close friends and family, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. "I take my brother with me in every one of my prayers and I am deeply connected to him," his sister told Bild.
According to Bild, who reported on Fischbacher's death, his sister said he fell asleep "peacefully and gently" before passing away.
(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)