Adam West's 'Batman' co-stars Burt Ward and Julie Newmar open up about 'unexpected loss'

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Former “Batman” co-stars Burt Ward and Julie Newmar took time to remember Adam West, who died Friday at age 88 from leukemia.

“Adam and I had a special friendship for more than 50 years,” Ward told Fox News. The 71-year-old actor starred opposite West as sidekick Robin in the superhero series, which ran from 1966 through 1968.

“We shared some of the most fun times of our lives together; our families have deep love and respect for each other,” he added. “This is a terribly unexpected loss of my lifelong friend. I will forever miss him. There are several fine actors who have portrayed Batman in films, in my eyes there was only one real Batman and that is and always will be Adam West; He was truly the Bright Knight.”

Newmar, who appeared as seductive villainess Catwoman, also had “sweet memories” of her beloved friend.

“Stellar, exemplar, a king to the end,” the 83-year-old actress told Fox News in a statement. “He was bright, witty, and fun to work with. I will miss him in the physical world and savor him always in the world of imagination and creativity. He meant so much to people - a friend said, ‘The father that we wanted.’ That is a great gift, no matter how you live it.”

Newmar told Fox News in May that her relationship with Batman and Robin endured over the years.

“I love them, I love being with them,” she explained. “They’re very dear to me, they’ve become dearer over time. It was a wonderful casting… I see Burt and Adam all the time. And I still don’t think there has been a better Batman.”

West died “after a short but brave battle with leukemia,” his family stated on Facebook.

“It’s with great sadness that we are sharing this news,” the family said. “He was a beloved father, husband, grandfather, and great-grandfather. There are no words to describe how much we’ll miss him.”

West initially chaffed at being typecast after playing the Cape Crusader, but in later years he admitted he was pleased to have had the role in kicking off a big-budget film franchise by showing the character’s wide appeal.

“I’m delighted because my character became iconic and has opened a lot of doors in other ways, too,” he told the Associated Press in 2014.

Most recently West voiced Mayor Adam West in the long-running animated series “Family Guy.” In February 2016 he made an appearance on the CBS sitcom “The Big Bang Theory’s” 200th episode, which marked the 50th anniversary of “Batman.”

West was married three times and had six children.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.