Clark's rep tells TMZ, the TV icon had been in St. John's hospital in L.A. after undergoing an outpatient procedure last night. Clark suffered the "massive" heart attack following the procedure. Attempts to resuscitate him were unsuccessful.
Clark's health had been on the decline since he suffered a significant stroke in 2004 - forcing him to retire from his hosting gig at "New Years' Rockin' Eve," which he created in 1972. Ryan Seacrest took over in 2006. Dick has appeared on the show sporadically ever since.
Following the news of Clark's death, Ryan Seacrest released the following statement:
"I am deeply saddened by the loss of my dear friend Dick Clark. He has truly been one of the greatest influences in my life. I idolized him from the start, and I was graced early on in my career with his generous advice and counsel. When I joined his show in 2006, it was a dream come true to work with him every New Year’s Eve for the last 6 years. He was smart, charming, funny and always a true gentleman. I learned a great deal from him, and I’ll always be indebted to him for his faith and support of me. He was a remarkable host and businessman and left a rich legacy to television audiences around the world. We will all miss him."
Before suffering a stroke, Clark told Larry King he suffered from Type 2 diabetes.
Richard Wagstaff Clark was born into middle-class circumstances and worked tirelessly and with unrelenting focus to become one of the world's most successful entrepreneurs. By watching trends and spending profits wisely, Clark built a production empire that included the staging of rock concerts, television programs and specials, night club spectaculars, movies and record albums and hours of syndicated radio programs.
When Clark was a teen he suffered with acne, but by his 20s his looks smoothed out morphing Dick into the image of the all-American clean-cut young man.
Later in life Dick became saddled with the nickname, "The World's Oldest (Living) Teenager," but when starting out Clark's clean good looks and youthful boy-next-door image cost him jobs.
"They put me into radio because they said I was too young to be a newscaster. I went down there and they took one look at me and said, 'can't do that,' and made me a disc jockey. I lost cigarette ads, beer ads, everything. I was in my 20s but I had a teenager's face."
Later in life Clark was often asked how he managed to always look so young and he always chalked it up to genetics.
"Pick your parents carefully," Clark said.
Clark was born Nov. 30, 1929, in Mount Vernon, N.Y. After his older brother Bradley was killed piloting a mission for the Army Air Corps during World War II, their father, Richard, threw his support behind his other son, helping him fulfill his dream of entering broadcasting.
Clark spent hours listening to the radio to help himself grieve Bradley's death, precipitating a life-long love affair with the medium.
The elder Clark, who managed radio station WRUN helped Dick get a job in the mailroom while he went to Syracuse University.
By the time Clark graduated with a degree in business administration, he'd already parlayed that into years of radio experience as an announcer, newscaster and program host. Clark had also moved into local television, hosting a program on WFIL, Philadelphia, called "Bandstand" taking over from Bob Horn in 1956. That program soon became "American Bandstand," and in 1957 the show went national, became the most successful piece of national daytime programming and made Dick Clark a star.
In 1959, Congress began investigating so-called pay-for-play or payola incidents. After nearly a year of character-assassination, Clark was not charged.
Clark rebuilt his image and business and went on to create a media empire as a television producer, radio and television host and businessman.
Clark continued to host and produce "American Bandstand" until 1989. He hosted Miss Universe from 1990-1993.
In addition, Clark also hosted a bunch of game shows - like "Pyramid," "Scattergories," "The Challengers," and many more. Clark had been inducted into practically every hall of fame on the planet - including the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame. Clark had also received a total of 5 Emmy Awards for his work, as well as a Peabody Award. One Emmy was a lifetime achievement award.
"I was and still am the luckiest man you'll ever meet. I was doing a job I love - didn't get much money but I was real happy. It eventually all changed. I got to be real well known; made a fair amount of money doin' what I love... Doesn't get any better than that," Clark said.
Clark was married three times. He leaves behind former wives Karen Wigton Clark, Barbara Mallery Clark and Loretta Martin Clark, daughter Cindy and sons Richard Augustus II and Duane Clark, named after guitarist Duane Eddy.
"For now, Dick Clark... so long."
Photo Copyright Getty Images