Former Saturday Night Live star Dana Carvey shared on Thursday that his eldest son, Dex Carvey, died at 32 from an accidental drug overdose on Wednesday night.
“Last night we suffered a terrible tragedy,” Carvey wrote on Instagram in a post signed by the comedian and his wife, Paula Zwagerman. “Our beloved son, Dex, died of an accidental drug overdose. He was 32 years old. Dex packed a lot into those 32 years. He was extremely talented at so many things–music, art, film making; comedy–and pursued all of them passionately.”
The post continued, “It’s not an exaggeration to say that Dex loved life. And when you were with him, you loved life too. He made everything fun. But most of all, he loved his family; his friends and his girlfriend, Kaylee.”
The Carveys’ post concluded, “Dex was a beautiful person. His handmade birthday cards are a treasure. We will miss him forever. To anyone struggling with addiction or who loves someone struggling with addiction, you are in our hearts and prayers.”
TMZ reported that Dex was found unresponsive locked in a bathroom at his home in Los Angeles by first responders after they received a call from his girlfriend.
Dex had followed in his father’s footsteps to pursue a career as a stand-up comic, even opening for the legendary SNL star’s 2016 Netflix special, Straight White Male. Carvey’s younger son, Thomas, is also pursuing a career in comedy.
Fred Armisen previously revealed that he had based his character in SNL’s “Californians” sketch on one of Carvey’s children, but did not specify which son. “We did a stand-up show in San Francisco and Dana was telling me about his son,” Armisen explained on an episode of Carvey’s Fly on the Wall podcast cohosted by David Spade. “And he’s just like, ‘It’s hard to be mad at him,’ because, I think he got pulled over or something. He does this impression of his son and he goes, ‘No, but, no, Dad, no, you don’t,’ you know? And, from that, as we were trying to do a California accent, as we’re writing the sketch, that kind of came up.”
Watch Dex doing a stand-up set to open for his dad below.
If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, please contact the SAMHSA helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.