Screenshot of image of Dr. Egon Spengler, played by Harold Ramis.
Screenshot of image of Dr. Egon Spengler, played by Harold Ramis.
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Harold Ramis, the legendary actor, director and writer of comedies including "Ghostbusters," "Caddyshack" and "Groundhog Day" has died aged 69.

The long-time Chicago resident passed away at 12:53 A.M. Monday from a rare disease called autoimmune inflammatory vasculitis, The Chicago Tribune reported. He was surrounded by family. 

Ramis began having serious problems with his health in May 2010, when an infection led to complications related to the disease, the newspaper cited his wife as saying. He had to learn to walk again, but had a relapse of the disease in 2011, the newspaper reported.

The Jewish actor was well-known for playing Dr. Egon Spengler in the "Ghost Busters,' series and Russell Ziskey in "Stripes," films which he also co- wrote.

He was writer and director of other comedy hits, such as "Caddyshack," "Groundhog Day," and "Analyze This."

Responding to the news, Ghostbuster co-star Dan Aykroyd said, "May he now get the answers he was always seeking."

Actor Billy Crystal tweeted: "Sad to hear my friend Harold Ramis passed away. A brilliant, funny, actor and director. A wonderful husband and dad. Big loss to us all. Bc."