Hugh Hefner dead at 91

Playboy founder Hugh M. Hefner died Wednesday, Playboy Enterprises announced. He was 91.

“Hugh M. Hefner, the American icon who in 1953 introduced the world to Playboy magazine and built the company into one of the most recognizable American global brands in history, peacefully passed away today from natural causes at his home, The Playboy Mansion, surrounded by loved ones. He was 91 years old,” Playboy Enterprises, Inc. said in a statement Wednesday night.

Hefner is survived by his wife Crystal and four grown children: Christie, who served as CEO of Playboy Enterprise for more than 20 years; David, Marston and Cooper, the latter who currently serves as Chief Creative Officer at the company.

Cooper said in a statement, “My father lived an exceptional and impactful life as a media and cultural pioneer and a leading voice behind some of the most significant social and cultural movements of our time in advocating free speech, civil rights and sexual freedom.”

He added of his father, “He defined a lifestyle and ethos that lie at the heart of the Playboy brand, one of the most recognizable and enduring in history. He will be greatly missed by many, including his wife Crystal, my sister Christie and my brothers David and Marston and all of us at Playboy Enterprises,” ses.

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