Hugh Hefner, the founder of Playboy, has died aged 91.
Hefner was born on April 9, 1926 in Chicago, Illinois, and went on to become a millionaire after founding the influential men’s magazine in 1953.
On Wednesday night the official Playboy Twitter account announced: ‘American Icon and Playboy Founder, Hugh M. Hefner passed away today. He was 91. #RIPHef’.
Hefner’s death was confirmed in a statement from Playboy Enterprises that said he ‘passed away today from natural causes at his home, The Playboy Mansion, surrounded by loved ones.’
Hefner’s son, Cooper Hefner, who is also the chief creative officer of Playboy Enterprises, said: ‘My father lived an exceptional and impactful life as a media and cultural pioneer and a leading voice behind some of the most significant social and cultural movements of our time in advocating free speech, civil rights and sexual freedom.
‘He defined a lifestyle and ethos that lie at the heart of the Playboy brand, one of the most recognizable and enduring in history.
‘He will be greatly missed by many, including his wife Crystal, my sister Christie and my brothers David and Marston, and all of us at Playboy Enterprises.’
It has also been reported that Hefner’s wife Crystal Harris will inherit nothing after signing an ironclad prenup before their wedding and was never added to his will.