The gaming community says goodbye to another legend with the passing of Paul Haddad, best known for his role as rookie cop Leon S. Kennedy in Resident Evil 2 (1998). Initial reports of Haddad’s passing trickled in on social media and Reddit, citing telling comments on his personal Facebook page offering condolences to his family.
His passing was later confirmed by Invader Studios, the team behind the Resident Evil 2 HD remake that later became Daymare: 1998, the last project Haddad voiced. In the tweet, Invader Studios stated Haddad “passed away recently,” but didn’t elaborate on the voice actor’s cause of death.
In his last Facebook post, added February 14, 2020, Haddad shared a GoFundMe to fund his third neurosurgery procedure in three months. The candid post reveals Haddad’s battle with severe OCD since the age of 12 and the deep brain stimulation implant he received to help with the condition.
Though the implant provided him with relief from his OCD, during a battery replacement procedure, he suffered a hematoma and underwent brain surgery to stop the bleeding. He developed further complications from the replacement surgery and ultimately was forced to have the DBS implant removed. In his post, Haddad revealed that after the procedure, his career was “at a standstill” and his OCD had returned.
Since his passing, fans have been taking to his Facebook page to memorialize his iconic place in gaming history. Along with Resident Evil 2 and Daymare, Haddad appeared in 52 episodes of American Bikers as Sheldon “Rabbit” Gilpin, voiced Willy in the Free Willy TV series from 1994, and portrayed Lefty for 26 episodes in John Callahan’s Quads!