Hiram Kasten, comedian and ‘Seinfeld’ regular, dies at 71

Actor Hiram Kasten, who made his mark in stand-up comedy and network TV shows like “Seinfeld,” died in western New York after a prolonged illness, his family said Sunday.

Kasten was 71 when he passed away in Batavia, outside of Buffalo, according to a statement posted on his Facebook page.

“Hiram Kasten loved show business and lived his dream of being in show business,” the family said in a statement announcing his death.

Kasten’s cause of death was not disclosed but the family said he’d been “fighting through a multitude of illnesses” in the past seven years, “including prostate cancer.”

In the past six months, Kasten had been been telling friends he was terminally ill.

“His great comedy and artistic community rallied to his side,” his family said. “Some made trips to Batavia to visit him, late night Zoom meetings with friends on both coasts ensued and went into the wee hours of the morning.”

Kasten, a Bronx native and lifelong Yankees fan, was a mainstay in New York City’s comedy scene throughout the 1980s playing in clubs such as The Comic Strip and Comedy Cellar.

He loved the craft of comedy and would regularly work marathon weekends, doing gigs in far away spots like New Jersey and Staten Island before rushing back to Manhattan for late-night sets.

“It was a big deal to have a show outside of town and then two or three spots in town on the weekend,” according to the Facebook statement. “One could actually make a living, and he did!”

Kasten eventually moved to Los Angeles to pursue acting and worked steadily throughout the 90s and early 2000s with credits on “7th Heaven,” “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “Mad About You,” “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” “L.A.Law,” “Seinfeld” and “It’s Like, You Know…”

His “Seinfeld” work came in three episodes in 1993-94 playing a co-worker of Elaine Benes, played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

Kasten and his wife, Diana Kastenbaum moved to Batavia in 2012 so she could be close to her aging father. She ran for Congress in 2016.

Kasten is survived by his wife and their daughter, Millicent Jade Kastenbaum.

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