James McNair, known in the comedy world as Uncle Jimmy Mack, died June 6 in the multi-vehicle accident on the New Jersey Turnpike that put Tracy Morgan in critical condition. He was 62.
McNair, who was from Peekskill, New York, became close friends with Morgan after the two met at Harlem’s Uptown Comedy Club when Morgan was first starting out. McNair acted as a mentor to Morgan and accompanied the 30 Rock star to his show at the Dover Downs Hotel & Casino in Delaware, from where they were returning when the accident occurred.
Many of McNair’s peers expressed their condolences after learning of his death. On Saturday, Steve Martin Tweeted, “So sorry to hear about the death of fellow comedian Jimmy Mack in the horrible accident.”