Actor Tony Sirico — best know for his role as Paulie Walnuts on “The Sopranos” — is dead, his brother, Robert, announced on Facebook on Friday. He was 79.
”It’s with great sadness, but with incredible pride, love and a complete lot of fond memories, that the family of Gennaro Anthony “Tony” Sirico wishes to tell you of his death on the morning of July 8, 2022,” the priest wrote together with an image of Sirico.
“Tony is survived by his two beloved children, Joanne Sirico Bello and Richard Sirico, grandchildren, siblings, nieces, nephews and plenty of other relatives.
“The family is deeply grateful for the various expressions of affection, prayer and condolences and requests that the general public respect its privacy on this time of bereavement. Memorial donations could also be made in his honor to Wounded Warriors, St. Jude’s Hospital and the Acton Institute.”
His co-star, Michael Imperioli, also posted a remembrance on Instagram, saying partly: “Tony was like nobody else: he was as tough, as loyal and as big hearted as anyone i’ve ever known.”
The Post has reached out to Sirico’s representatives for confirmation.
When he was 55, Sirico was sleeping on a cot in his mother’s front room in Brooklyn when he was forged as Walnuts. He originally auditioned for the role of Uncle Junior — who could be played by Dominic Chianese.
The hit HBO crime drama ran from 1999 to 2007. He won two Screen Actors Guild Awards for the role: one in 2000 and one other in 2008.
Sirico played gangsters in over a dozen movies, including “Goodfellas,” “Mob Queen,” “Mighty Aphrodite,” and “Gotti.”
It is a developing story.
Tony Sirico attends SopranosCon 2019 at Meadowlands Exposition Center on November 23, 2019.Getty Images
James Gandolfini and Tony Sirico as Tony Soprano and Paulie Walnuts.
Tony Sirico at “The Sopranos: The Complete Fifth Season” DVD launch party on June 6, 2005.Getty Images