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William "Willie" Garson kept his sexuality secret to avoid the controversy of a heterosexual playing a ghey man on TV.

Garson died Tuesday after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 57.

Willie Garson played openly ghey Stanford Blatch, a beloved talent agent who was referred to as the "Fifth Lady" in HBO's Sex and the City.

Garson played his role so well that fans of the show assumed he was homosexual in real life.

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Blatch was besties with Sarah Jessica Parker's character Carrie Bradshow on the HBO series.

In the last two seasons of the show, his character, Blatch, was romantically linked with Broadway dancer Marcus Adente (Sean Palmer).

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In real life, Garson was involved in a longterm relationship with a woman who didn't want children. So he adopted a boy, Nathen, as a single father.

"He's an adult and soon to be taking care of me which is really why I got him to be honest," Garson said about Nathen, now 20. "He's lovely and a really special guy. He's wonderful and he's in college in Ohio."

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In an interview with Page Six last year Willie explained how he kept his sexuality a secret "for years" over fears his heterosexuality would be "offensive to gay people".

"For years I didn't talk about it because I found it to be offensive to gay people. People playing gay characters jumping up and down screaming that they're not gay, like that would somehow be a bad thing if they were."

He added:

"When the question would come up during the show I would say, 'When I was on White Collar no one ever asked me if I was a conman, and when I was on NYPD Blue, nobody ever asked me if I was a murderer.

"This is what we do for a living, portray people."

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Screenshot: CBS News

CBS News issued a sincere apology on Monday night for mixing up photos of the late Congressman Elijah Cummings and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, who announced he has stage 4 pancreatic cancer.

The mixup occurred on Monday's broadcast of CBS Evening News. A photograph of Cummings was mistakenly identified as Lewis. Cummings died of natural causes on Oct. 17, at age 68.

"Tonight on the 6:30 p.m. ET broadcast of the CBS Evening News, one photograph was misidentified as Congressman John Lewis. We have replaced the photo in all broadcasts and platforms. We deeply regret the error," CBS tweeted.

News of Lewis' cancer diagnosis prompted reactions from celebrities and lawmakers on social media.

Lewis, 79, said he will continue to serve in the House of Representatives while undergoing chemotherapy treatment for his cancer.

The civil rights leader once marched alongside Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to fight for the freedom of Black people to vote in U.S. elections.

But on Sunday, Lewis announced he is in the biggest fight of his life.

"I have been in some kind of fight - for freedom, equality, basic human rights - for nearly my entire life," he said.

"I have never faced a fight quite like the one I have now."

Lewis added: "I have a fighting chance."

Pancreatic cancer is one of the few cancers that can go undetected until it is too far advanced to treat.

Bushwick Bill, founder of legendary rap group The Geto Boys, is battling stage 4 cancer of the pancreas. The 52-year-old told TMZ that he was diagnosed in February, after doctors found a mass on his pancreas that they initially believed was benign (non-cancerous).

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A nephew of legendary queen of soul Aretha Franklin is disputing reports that the 18-time Grammy winner is at death's doorstep.

On Saturday, veteran reporter Roger Friedman first broke the news that Aretha was "gravely ill" and in a Detroit hospital.

But Aretha's nephew Tim Franklin believes she will pull through.

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