Richard Harrison—perhaps better known as "The Old Man" of Pawn Stars fame—died of Parkinson's disease Monday at age 77. "He will be tremendously missed by our family, the team at Gold & Silver Pawn and his many fans the world over," his son Rick posted on Instagram. "He was my hero and I was fortunate to get a very cool 'Old Man' as my dad. ... He lived a very full life and through the History television show Pawn Stars touched the lives of people all over, teaching them the value of loving your family, hard work and humor." A post on the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop's Facebook page says Harrison will be remembered "as the sometimes grumpy (always loving, however), often wisecracking, and voice of absolute reason" on the show.
Harrison, a Navy veteran, brought his family to Las Vegas looking for "a fresh start" and opened the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in 1988, per a bio on the History channel website. He became "the king of purchasing underpriced merchandise," turning the store into a multimillion-dollar business, the bio states. Pawn Stars, which is centered around the store, started in 2009 and also stars Harrison's grandson and his childhood friend. It showcases the Harrisons as they interact with sellers who bring in rare, sometimes historical, and often "kooky" or "unusual" items, plus the local experts who evaluate those items. In a statement obtained by the Hollywood Reporter, History says Harrison's "wisdom and candor" will be missed. (Read more reality TV stories.)