Robert Downey Jr pays tribute to assistant Jimmy Rich as he dies in car accident

Robert Downey Jr has paid tribute to his assistant Jimmy Rich, revealing he had been killed in a car accident on Wednesday night.

Rich had worked with the Avengers star for many years, starting in 2003 when he appeared in The Singing Detective as he bounced back from publicly battling addictions. In the years that followed the actor would go on to star in Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang, Zodiac and Iron Man in 2008.

The actor credited Rich, who was close to the star’s family, with helping him through his recovery.

On Instagram Downey Jr shared a series of photos of his ‘brother’ Rich including one of him at home with his dog.

He wrote: This is not news. This is a terrible and shocking tragedy.

‘Jimmy Rich was in a fatal car accident at approx. 8pm yesterday. He was a brother, my right hand man, an uncle to our kids and beloved by all who experienced his singular character and wit…our thoughts go to his relatives, friends, co-workers, and all the fans who knew him as the man who supported every step of my recovery, life and career..

‘Again, my condolences to his beautiful family, and the legacy of hope and redemption his life will continue to represent.

‘Peace Be Unto You.’

His Avengers co-star Chris Evans also shared a tribute on his own Instagram page, posting a photo of him in character as Captain America with an arm around Rich.

‘I don’t have the words. Jimmy Rich was unlike anyone else. He left an indelible impression on everyone he met. No one more so than my brother @robertdowneyjr They were inseparable,’ Evans said.

‘I’m sending all my love to Jimmy’s friends and family. Be sure to hug your loved ones tightly and please take the time today to show Downey how many people love him and are here for him during this incredibly dark time.’

Other Marvel stars sent messages of support in the comments, with Josh Brolin writing: ‘No words. Just tears and gratitude for the gift that was him.’

Chris Pratt said: ‘Oh no! 😢 I’m so sorry man. Im praying his family, you and yours. That sucks so bad. I’m so sorry to hear that. He was awesome. Such a tragedy.’

Ryan Reynolds posted: ‘So sorry to hear this. Condolences to you and Jimmy’s family. Heartbreaking’, with Jeremy Renner writing: ‘Wow. Brother. What a devastating loss.’

Iron Man star Clark Gregg said: ‘Ohhhhh man. I am so sorry.’

‘Heartbroken. Such a good man,’ Jack Black wrote.

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