Chris Ayres, a stage and voice actor most known for providing the English voice of Frieza in Dragon Ball Z Kai and Dragon Ball Super, has died. Ayres died peacefully on October 18, 2021, and his cause of death was not specified. He was 56 years old.
Christopher Owen Ayres was born on May 16, 1965, in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to his work as a voice actor in several high-profile anime series, Ayres was a stage actor and director. He also worked as a scriptwriter and ADR director for various English dubs, primarily with Funimation. Aside from voicing Frieza in Dragon Ball anime and video games since 2010, Ayres also voiced Kei Kurono from Gantz, Shingen Takeda from Sengoku Basara, and Wagram from The Last Remnant.
Ayres’ partner Krystal LaPorte shared the news via Twitter, along with a heartfelt message to the late actor and director.
— Krystal LaPorte (@WowSuchKrystal) October 19, 2021
Back in 2017, Ayres was hospitalized and diagnosed with end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or (COPD). Friends and family later set up a fundraising campaign in order to pay for a double lung transplant. Ayres continued to work as a voice actor after his diagnosis, reprising his role as Frieza in Dragon Ball Super up until 2019. He also played the character in the Dragon Ball Super: Broly movie released in 2018.