Hugh Hefner, the founder of Playboy magazine, died on Wednesday “surrounded by loved ones,” . He was 91. The legendary Hefner, who first published the men’s magazine in 1953 “peacefully passed away today from natural causes at his home, The Playboy Mansion, surrounded by loved ones,” Playboy spokeswoman Teri Thomerson said. “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 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,” said Cooper Hefner, Chief Creative Officer of Playboy Enterprises.
Hef’s storied life included multiple awards, from both the Award of Honor and the First Amendment Award from the prestigious PEN Center USA organization in 2010 to becoming a “two-time Guinness Book of World Records holder for being the longest running editor of a magazine and for having the largest scrapbook collection, which currently consists of more than 2900 volumes,” Playboy noted upon his death. The reality show The Girls Next Door gave viewers a glimpse into his personal life, while he lived with three girlfriends, Holly Madison, Bridget Marquardt and Kendra Wilkinson. After they moved out he began dating Playmate Crystal Harris and married her on December 31, 2012.
Details of his funeral were not yet released.
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