Batman's right-hand-man Robin - Burt Ward - mourns Adam West

"I am devastated at the loss of one of my very dearest friends", said Ward in a statement. The legendary actor passed away after a short battle with leukemia, according to a confirmation from his rep. Smith was 4 years old when he first saw West, and he said the star inspired him to be a good person.

Adam West's "Batman" costar Burt Ward has joined some of Hollywood's biggest stars in paying tribute to the legend, who died Friday night at the age of 88. Filmmakers and producers constantly anxious that audiences would be taken out of the story when Bruce Wayne walks onscreen, essentially limiting West to Batman-related roles if he wanted to find work.

West had been born in Walla Walla, Washington in 1928, and started acting in the 1950s in Hawaii.

In addition to his wife, Marcelle, West is survived by six children, five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

'This is a terribly unexpected loss of my lifelong friend.

Of course, West eventually dropped the cape of that intrepid hero, starring in dozens of films and eventually reinventing himself as a voice actor - perhaps known best for his recurring role as the mayor (also named Adam West) on Family Guy.

"Adam West exemplified heroism", Affleck wrote on Twitter. I will forever miss him.

Adam West poses for a photo in Los Angeles in 1985. Although the show lasted for only three seasons from January 1966 to March 1968, it has lived on in reruns.

The West family also issued a statement on Facebook: "There are no words to describe how much we'll miss him".

And, of course, several members of the current DC television universe have reached out to share their experiences and love for the man who helped start it all.

Many of those expressing their sadness shared that West's portrayal of the caped crusader had been their childhood hero.

Actress Julie Newmar, who played Catwoman alongside the late Adam West's Batman, paid tribute to her co-star Saturday, calling him "the finest Batman ever".

West started playing the character of Bruce Wayne/Batman in 1966 on the TV series BATMAN, which became an instant success.

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