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Tom Davis, Al Franken's 'SNL' writing partner, dies at 59

July 19, 2012|By Claire Noland
  • Al Franken and Tom Davis in 1978.
Al Franken and Tom Davis in 1978. (Associated Press )

Tom Davis, a comedy writer who teamed with Al Franken to write memorable bits on"Saturday Night Live" from the time the late-night show first aired in the mid-1970s, has died. He was 59.

Davis died Thursday at his home in New York's Hudson Valley, his wife, Mimi Raleigh, told the Associated Press. He had throat and neck cancer.

The duo, who met as classmates growing up in Minneapolis, created for "SNL" the Coneheads, a raft of characters and skits featuring Bill Murray's Nick the Lounge Singer.

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Davis was among the "SNL" writers who won Emmys in 1976, '77 and '89. He won another writing Emmy in 1978 for a Paul Simon variety show.

In his 2009 memoir, "Thirty-nine Years of Short-Term Memory Loss: The Early Days of SNL From Someone Who Was There," Davis wrote about his friendship and falling out with Franken. The two later reconciled.

Franken is now a Democratic U.S. senator representing Minnesota.

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