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Tracy Morgan: The Hilarious SNL Veteran Who Triumphed Over Tragedy

Full Name Tracy Jamal Morgan
Born November 10, 1968 (age 54), The Bronx, New York
Net Worth $70 million
Spouse Sabina Morgan (m. 1987–2009)
Social Media Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

Tracy Morgan is a famous American actor, comedian and producer, known for his work on Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock. With his loud, brash, and often unpredictable persona, Morgan has been making audiences laugh for over three decades.

Early Life in the Bronx

Tracy Morgan was born in the Bronx borough of New York City on November 10, 1968. He had a rough upbringing in the Tompkins Housing Projects with his mother and four siblings. Morgan‘s father, Jimmy Morgan, was a Vietnam veteran struggling with heroin addiction who died from AIDS when Tracy was just 17.

As a child, Morgan dealt with a severe stutter that made him a target for bullies. He discovered that imitating characters helped improve his speech. Morgan reflected, "That‘s how I got better, learning how to play a character and becoming somebody else."

Meteoric Rise on Saturday Night Live

Morgan‘s comedy career began to take off in the 1990s. After stand-up success, he landed a role on Saturday Night Live in 1996. Morgan became renowned for donning costumes and accents to inhabit hilarious personas like Brian Fellow, Astronaut Jones, and the irreverent Uncle Jemima.

SNL creator Lorne Michaels once praised Morgan as "always dedicated and uniquely talented." Many credit Morgan with reinvigorating SNL during the late 90s and early 2000s.

After leaving the show in 2003, Morgan has made several cameo returns over the years, reminding audiences of his comedic magic on Studio 8H‘s iconic stage.

Primetime Stardom with 30 Rock

Morgan soared to new heights of fame playing wild and eccentric Tracy Jordan on NBC‘s 30 Rock from 2006 to 2013. As the unpredictable movie star joining Tina Fey‘s fictional sketch show, Morgan regularly stole scenes with his improvisational flair. He movingly portrayed Jordan‘s hidden vulnerabilities underneath the antics.

30 Rock ended up winning 16 Emmy Awards over its run, including Morgan‘s 2009 win for Outstanding Supporting Actor. To this day, reruns continue attracting new generations of fans.

Near-Fatal 2014 Car Accident

In June 2014, a Walmart truck struck the limo van Morgan was riding in after a Delaware performance, killing his close friend James McNair and leaving Morgan in critical condition. He endured traumatic injuries including a broken leg, broken ribs, and severe brain trauma that left him comatose for two weeks.

Morgan later described the painstaking process of relearning how to walk and talk during his long road to recovery. But he persevered through intense rehab and was performing standup again by 2015, showing the world his tenacious spirit.

Triumphant Return and The Last O.G.

After rebuilding his strength, Morgan returned to primetime TV triumphantly in 2018 starring alongside Tiffany Haddish in The Last O.G. He drew praise for his poignant performance as an ex-con rebuilding his life. The show aired for four seasons on TBS.

Morgan also headlined his share of standup specials for Netflix, Comedy Central, and more over the years. He proved he could still own the stage with his signature rants, accents, and impersonations.

Why Morgan is Comedy Royalty

What makes Tracy so beloved after all these years?

  • His loud, boisterous sense of humor that leaves no topic off limits
  • Inhabiting ridiculous personalities like his 30 Rock character Tracy Jordan
  • Fearless physical comedy and spot-on impersonations of everyone from Mike Tyson to Star Jones
  • Putting his life into his work – exorcising childhood demons through laughter
  • Remaining a humble Bronx guy despite massive success in Hollywood

Little Known Facts About the Comedian

  • Tracy still loves playing basketball and once sank 2 shots blindfolded on The Tonight Show
  • He has been a vegetarian for years and done multiple PETA campaigns
  • He voiced the character Spoonie Luv on Crank Yankers in the early 2000s
  • He survived being stabbed during a fight when he was just 15 years old
  • Tracy performed standup for the inmates of Rikers Island early in his career

The Legacy of Tracy Morgan

Through decades of side-splitting performances on shows like SNL and 30 Rock, Tracy Morgan has cemented his place in comedy history. His resilience in the face of extraordinary hardship and trauma has proven he is a true inspiration as well. Morgan has made it clear he won‘t stop making us laugh anytime soon. We can‘t wait to see what he does next!