Many of you no doubt remember Mario's early forays into the world of Saturday morning cartoon entertainment. Twenty years ago, times were quite different for the popular mustachioed plumber, and the three series' of cartoons that occurred over the period of 1989-1994 took some notable liberties with the source material, but were nonetheless entertaining to watch. Tony Rosato was the name of the voice actor who supplied the voice for Mario's lanky brother, Luigi, in the latter two series'—Super Mario World and The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3.—but unfortunately Rosato passed away at age 62 on the evening of Monday the 9th.

The cause of death is still being investigated, but it's believed that Rosato died of a heart attack. As for his career, Rosato was the first cast member on Saturday Night Live who was born outside North America. Alongside the voice work he did for the Super Mario shows, he was involved in dozens of other animated shows, and also voiced Nemesis in Resident Evil 3. In 2005, Rosato ran into legal issues that halted his career temporarily when he was diagnosed with Capgras syndrome -- a rare mental illness where the victim believes those closest to them have been replaced with imposters -- but he was subsequently released from prison after a lengthy hiatus awaiting trial. Our hearts go out to those who were near to him.

[via torontosun.com, thestar.com]