TikTok star with 50 million views dies in ‘sudden’ tragedy, family announces

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A popular TikTok star has died suddenly, his devastated family have revealed.

John Kelly is one half of the popular account @texandjohn, which he ran with his son Tex Kelly

The death of the social media figure was confirmed in a touching montage posted to the app on Sunday, the Sun reports.

The heart-wrenching clip featured a series of family photos and clips from past videos. It was shared with their 2.3 million followers with the caption: "You'll always be my hero. Until next time Dad. I love you so much."

A cause of death for John has not yet been revealed, but in a statement shared to a GoFundMe page, Tex called his dad's passing a "surprise".

The post said: "It comes with a great pain to let you all know today about the loss of an incredible man. Dad's passing was a surprise to us all and something that we will be feeling the toll of for a very long time."

The touching tribute said that John had lived an "amazing life, full of hard work and love".

Devastated Tex said: "He was never negative, and as many of you have experienced personally with him, he was always someone you wanted to be around because he made you feel special and loved.

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"He was a great father, son, brother and friend to countless people."

A fundraiser has so far received $16,700 (£12,000) to help the family cover John's medical bills and funeral expenses.

Tex said both he and his wider family have been left "absolutely devastated" by John's death.

He told Newsweek in an interview: "My family is in a world of pain right now but appreciate the love and support from so many who feel from this loss as well.

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"I'm glad so many people got to see my dad, he lived a life worth living."

Tex and John only launched their joint TikTok account in January 2021 with a prank video. They have amassed a huge following of more than 2.5 million in the seven months that followed, along with over 50 million views on their page.

They built a fanbase with various videos during the pandemic which showed off pranks they were pulling on each other.

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John wasn't Tex's biological father, as he explained in a previous video.

"He told us how to fish, how to ride a bike, the difference between right and wrong and everything a great dad would," Tex explained in the clip.

John lived with his family in Eureka, California, while Tex recently relocated to Los Angeles to pursue a career in acting.

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