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Reality TV Stars You Didn't Know Passed Away

When some celebrities die, it can bring people together. When famous people like Michael Jackson and Robin Williams, and even Diana Princess of Wales pass, we mourn their death together. Almost as if we knew them. Reality TV produces so many new faces. Some are bound to pass away each year. But some of these guys are just as dear to viewers, if only because we get to see the real person. That's the genius of reality TV. There's nowhere to hide. No publicists to cover up bad news. No angle to hide the truth. We see it all happen in front of us, and there's no escaping the glare. Sadly though, there's no escaping death either.

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Pete McGarry

Gogglebox star Pete McGarry graced our screens since 2013 when he and his wife Linda joined the popular show in its second season. Pete was a firm favourite with audiences, but it could have been so different as Linda explained to The Sun, "We didn't know what Gogglebox was originally, but they wanted families, so we ended up on there with George. He loved it, and we loved the crew. He really took to it. We didn't know what it was going to be, and we went on to win a BAFTA." Linda and Pete were stars off-screen too, who fostered 68 children over a 20-year period.

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Nikki Grahame

You might remember Nikki Grahame from Big Brother in 2006. She was a TV personality, model and actress who finished fifth on the seventh series of Big Brother. She later placed sixth on Big Brother Canada and was the runner up on Ultimate Big Brother in 2010. Her first taste of the spotlight came on the set of EastEnders, but she was only an extra on the show. She was known for histrionics, including temper tantrums and theatrics in the BB house, so no wonder she was a favourite with TV audiences. Her personal life was troubled, and she suffered from anorexia nervosa for many years. She wrote two books on the subject - Dying to Be Thin (2009) and Fragile (2012). Sadly, she succumbed to the disease, aged just 38.

Sabine Schmitz

Fans of BBC's Top Gear will remember Sabine Schmitz making the lads look silly when she outraced them around the N├╝rburgring in a transit van. She featured on the show numerous times and was always a popular guest. She was known as the Queen of the Nurburgring after becoming the first female winner of the track's annual 24-hour endurance race. She died aged just 51, following a battle with cancer.

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John Langley

This next name isn't one you'll be familiar with, but he's worth a mention because he created a seminal TV show. Cops ran for 32 seasons beginning in 1989. Langley struggled to get anyone interested in the concept for the show, which is usually true for anyone innovating in a broadcast medium. Thankfully for Langley, the writers strike of 1988 presented him with an opportunity and Fox Network were only too pleased to pick up a show they could produce while the strike was on. John Langley was 78 when he passed away earlier this year.

Linda Torres

US star Linda Torres, who featured on Big Ang, the spin-off from Mob Wives, died in 2021 at the age of 67. Covid-19 was to blame for her passing. Torres was a friend of Angela "Big Ang" Raiola and featured a lot on the show. It was fitting that she died on April Fool's Day, as Raiola's sister Janine Detore told USA Today, "It was funny because Linda always had that good sense of humour... it just seems so fitting for Linda."

Mick Norcross

TOWIE star Mick Norcross also passed away in 2021. He was 57. He featured on ITV's popular show alongside his son Kirk until 2013. As the boss of celebrity nightspot Sugar Hut, he had a high profile in Essex and was much loved on the show. One of his co-stars, Mario Falcone, said he was "shocked and heartbroken" at the tragic news of Mick's passing which an inquest ruled as suicide.

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