'Degrassi' actor Jahmil French dead at 29


Jahmil French is best known for his role as Dave in the "Degrassi" universe. Photo: Stefan Brogren/Twitter

Jahmil French, who played Dave Turner on Degrassi: The Next Generation, died on Monday (March 1), his agent Gabrielle Kachman confirmed to Variety. He was 29.

"It is with a heavy heart that I confirm the passing of a dear friend and client Jahmil French," she said in a statement.

"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."

A cause of death has not yet been confirmed.

Producer Joshua Safran tweeted about French's death on Tuesday morning.

"I can confirm my good friend, co-worker, and all around inspiration, Jahmil French, passed away yesterday," he wrote. "Right now we're all just processing this devastating news."

Safran worked with French on the short-lived Netflix series Soundtrack, a musical drama set in Los Angeles where French played Dante Mendoza, who works to adjust to life outside of prison.

French is best known for his role as Dave, who first entered the Degrassi universe in 2009 as a new student intent on achieving popularity.

He stayed on the show until 2013 and, during that time, earned a Canadian Screen Award nomination.

Stefan Brogren, who played Snake on Degrassi: Next Class and served as a series producer, paid tribute to French on Twitter.

"He performed Dave with such sensitivity and thoughtfulness and could make me laugh so easily," Brogren wrote.

"It was a pleasure to work with him and he will be missed. This is a real loss. Rest In Peace."

Degrassi co-star Melinda Shankar, who played French's primary love interest, Alli Bhandari, reflected on their time together:

"So grateful for memories and deep convos with you, beautiful angel. Blessed that we got to be part of a big dysfunctional family together. Thank you for sharing your gift with the world. I just hope you knew how loved you were."

On Instagram, Annie Clark, who portrayed Fiona Coyne in the teen drama, wrote about her first memory of French. "We started on 'Degrassi' the same year and I'll never forget the day I met him. Jahmil was so full of energy and absolute joy to be around." – Reuters

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