Ken Shimura, a veteran slapstick comedian and onetime member of rock ’n’ roll band and comedy group The Drifters, a household name in Japan in the 1970s and 1980s, has died of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus, his agency said Monday. He was 70.

Shimura last week became the first Japanese entertainment figure to announce their infection with the virus. His agency on Monday announced his death from the disease known as COVID-19.

Shimura was hospitalized on March 20 after developing a fever and being diagnosed with severe pneumonia. He tested positive for the virus on March 23.