Kaley Cuoco Remembers Her Late On-Screen Dad In Emotional Post

No matter how many years pass, it never really gets easier mourning the loss of a loved one.
On Monday, Kaley Cuoco posted a heartbreaking Instagram to honor actor John Ritter, who tragically passed away 14 years ago at the age of 54 after suffering from an aortic dissection. Sadly, his death also fell on his daughter Stella's fifth birthday.
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"Today, 14 years ago, we lost one of the best there was...still not a day goes by where he doesn't make me laugh one way or another," she captioned the black-and-white photo of herself next to Ritter.
At the time of his passing, Ritter was starring as the Hennessy family patriarch in the ABC comedy 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter with Cuoco, Katey Sagal, Amy Davidson, and Martin Spanjers. Cuoco played Ritter's daughter, Bridgette, a beautiful, boy-crazy teen who drove her parents up a wall.
Though Ritter died during the shooting of the show's second season, 8 Simple Rules ran for three complete seasons before going off the air in 2005. The show never replaced Ritter's character and instead addressed his death.
During an interview with Today back in 2008, Ritter's widow, Amy Yasbeck, recalled the events leading up to her husband's death. Ritter had been on set when he started to feel extremely ill. She recalled that as Ritter entered the hospital, he apologized for "ruining Stella's birthday" and smiled as he told her he loved her. That was the last time she saw him alive.
According to the American Heart Association, most people experience aortic dissections when they have a tear in the inner lining of the aorta, causing their major artery to leak blood. The majority of Americans who have an aortic dissection are male, and the symptoms often include sudden pain in the chest or upper back. Though the disease is deadly, it can be treated by surgery or medicine if it is caught in the early stages.
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