MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — They were the original writing team on Saturday Night Live.

Tom Davis, who for many years partnered with Al Franken, has died at the age of 59. His wife says he died at his home north of New York City Thursday of neck and throat cancer.

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Franken and Davis became a comedy writing team that created some of the more memorable skits in the early years of Saturday Night Live. They also appeared in films such as “Trading Places,” as well as on stage with the Grateful Dead.

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“Today is a sad day for all of us who loved Tom,” said Franken, who is now a Democratic Minnesota senator. “I spoke with his mom this afternoon and she recalled fondly all the laughter that would come from the basement when Tom and I first got started in comedy.”

Franken said he visited Davis two weeks ago.

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“Though he was deathly ill, we did a lot of laughing,” Franken said. “He was a great friend, a good man, and so funny.”