Pepe Yeruba Pizarro
Pepe Yeruba Pizarro served as Don Francisco's sidekick on "Sabado Gigante" for 12 years. YouTube

Yesterday morning, Pepe “Yeruba” Pizarro was taken to the Hospital Parroquial de San Bernardo, where he died at 71 years old from a diabetic neuropathy. Pizarro was best known for his role in Don Francisco’s “Sabado Gigante” as the host sidekick for an entire decade. Mario Luis Kreutzberger (known as Don Francisco) broke the sad news via his social media yesterday, where he said: “A great @SabadoGigante collaborator left today. He worked with us for a decade. May Pepe “Yeruba” Pizarro rest in peace.”

Yeruba collaborated on the show during the 80’s and then left to continue his career on the radio, in Chilean stations such as Radio Minería and Radio San Bernardo.

In 2014, Pizarro resurfaced on TV after many years for an interview with Carola Brethauer in “Sin Dios Ni Late,” from Zona Latina. There, the former host explained his condition and the possible solutions to it. “I am diabetic and suffer from hypertension, but the person you just announced; the person people know from watching in their homes, that’s me. The joyful, charming energetic person; that’s still me.”

Don Francisco also suffers from diabetes, and it’s a cause that has become extremely important to him. “Diabetes is a silent disease,” he told Fox Latino News last year. “We (Hispanics) are a community that is highly predisposed to diabetes, and there are a lot of people who don’t know that they have it.”

In one of his many efforts to spread awareness, he helped launch the website “Cuida Tu Don,” (take care of your gift). “It’s an epidemic,” he said. “With this site, we tell people all about diabetes, how to figure out if you have it, about nutrition,” he explained.

Reportedly, Pizarro had been diagnosed with the disease two years ago, and he did not want to go through with a spinal surgery that could have, at least, helped with the physical pain he suffered.

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