Actor had voiced anime villain since 2010
The news was announced by fellow anime voice star Krystal LaPorte on Twitter.
According to LaPorte, Ayres – who voiced the villainous character Frieza – died on Monday (18 October) surrounded by his family.
“Chris loved you all,” she wrote. “How much he loved other people filled the vast majority of our conversations.
“To those of you who truly loved him back, thank you. To those of you who stayed in touch, checked on him, reminded him that he was so, so much more than his job, you were the fuel of his fight. You fed the dreams of a future that kept him going longer than any normal person could go.”
Ayres was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in 2017, requiring a double lung transplant.
He had regularly kept his fans updated on the status of his health since his diagnosis.
The actor, who had voiced Frieza since 2010 following Funimation’s dub of Dragon Ball Z, also had a variety of other anime voice credits, including Kei Kurono in Gantz, Corset in Panty & Stocking With Garterbelt and Everlue in Fairy Tail.
Following his death, fans and co-stars paid tribute to Ayers, with Sean Schemmel (Son-Goku) writing: “I can’t stop crying about the loss of my dear friend and colleague, Chris Ayres. I never thought I’d say this because I used to tease him about it all the time, but thank you Chris, for the Love and Laughter, Always…I’ll see you in Otherworld bro, and we’ll spar again, Frieza.”
Funimation wrote: “Rest In Peace, Christopher Ayres. Thank you for all that you’ve done for so many fans. We’ll miss you dearly. “