Kom Chuanchuen, rough-spoken everyman comedian, dies at 63 of COVID

A file photo of Akom Preedakul or “Kom Chuanchuen”
A file photo of Akom Preedakul or “Kom Chuanchuen”

A famed comedian who starred in dozens of movies since the turn of the century died this morning of complications related to the coronavirus, according to his family. He was 63.

Akom Preedakul, better known as Kom Chuanchuen, fell ill over two weeks ago. The news shocked his many fans who kept tabs on his condition until Napatcharin Phaibunrattanakit, Kom’s daughter, gave her most recent update on his health at 7am this morning in a post that read, “My father now rests in peace.”

On April 12, Kom announced that he had tested positive for COVID-19, likely contracted from a fellow performer at a TV shoot. Only a few days after he was admitted to the hospital, his condition worsened and he fell into a coma. He suffered from pneumonia and kidney failure and had to rely on a ventilator and go through dialysis. 

He was transferred to the Chakri Naruebodindra Medical Institute and died there this morning. 

Kom was born on Jan. 5, 1958, in Ayutthaya province. He rose to fame in the noughties when he starred in action comedy Heaven’s Seven (2002). From there, he went on to appear in more than 60 movies, sitcoms and soap operas. He was known for hurling his catchphrase, “ai sat! (you fucking animal!).”

Kom is survived by his wife Prapasri Preedakul and three children – Napatcharin Phaibunrattanakit, Krit Preedakul and Witan Preedakul – and granddaughter Lilwara “Nilla” Phaibunrattanakit.

Funeral arrangements have yet to be announced.

#UncleKom has been trending on Thai Twitter this morning.

Thailand on Friday reported 1,583 new COVID-19 infections and 15 new deaths, bringing the total tally to 65,153 infections and 203 fatalities since the outbreak began.

Read more Coconuts Bangkok stories here.

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