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Martin Lawrence Pays Tribute to Martin Costar Tommy Ford: 'Great Man and Friend'

Updated

Martin Lawrence is mourning the loss of his Martin costar Tommy Ford after the actor passed away at the age of 52 on Wednesday.

Lawrence, who was a co-creator and star of the 5-season sitcom, said in a statement to PEOPLE, “Tommy was not only a great costar but he was a great man and friend. He always brought with him his spirituality a positive attitude and so much joy. I am sad the world lost a great talent and that I lost a wonderful friend. God bless him and his family.”

Ford played Tommy Strawn — best friend to Lawrence’s character Martin Payne — on the comedic 90s series and passed away in an Atlanta hospital Wednesday afternoon, his agent confirmed to PEOPLE.

Lawrence, 51, also paid tribute to his late friend and cast mate with a heartwarming Instagram post. “My brother…we were friends way b4 the Martin show & I’m glad we were able to show true friendship on-screen,” he penned. “You brought a lot of love to the world and you will be greatly missed. God Bless to you and the family. Rest In Peace my brother. #TommyFord #Brotherforlife.”

In a statement obtained by PEOPLE, Ford’s family said on the passing of the actor: “It is with great sadness that we announce the untimely passing of our beloved Son, father, brother, husband, and friend Tommy Mykhal Ford. On behalf of the family, we would like to thank everyone for their love, support and prayers. Funeral arrangements will be forthcoming. Please respect the privacy of the Ford family during our time of grief.”

Steve Harvey, Vivica A. Fox and Bill Bellamy were among other members of Hollywood who mourned the actor’s death on social media.