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A popular YouTuber with more than 350,000 subscribers died after the studio he was renting caught on fire this week, according to the Hurriyet Daily News.
Emre Özkan, a 25-year-old from Turkey, produced his own comedy sketches on YouTube, accumulating more than 134 million views on his channel. He reportedly was renting a studio in Istanbul when the structure caught fire in the early morning on Tuesday. According to the newspaper, Özkan was apparently sleeping in the studio along with his girlfriend Nahide Cansu Kovanci, a student at a local university, when the fire broke out. Both perished in the fire.
Reportedly, the early findings of the investigation show that an electrical malfunction might have started the blaze.
Since joining YouTube in December 2011, Özkan has made numerous parody songs about athletes and musicians from his country. His latest YouTube video, uploaded on Oct. 20, was a parody song poking fun at the Turkish soccer team Fenerbahçe S.K.
As Özkan wrote in the video’s description, via Google’s translation, the video was “completely made for humor” and “will be done to other teams.”
His most popular video was a parody of Turkish singer Çağatay Akman, which has earned nearly 36 million page views as of this writing.
In the comments section of his videos, his fans expressed their sadness at the loss. One wished that beautiful people get into heaven, and another wrote, “You’re always in our heart.” Another commenter, via Google’s translation, wrote, “Allah will make you laugh with the parodies of mercy. Let Allah be pleased with him.”
According to Sabah, a daily Turkish newspaper, Özkan had studied radio, TV, and cinema at Istanbul Arel University. He also reportedly worked as a wedding pianist, and he wanted to be a director when he was finished with school.
Josh Katzowitz is a staff writer at the Daily Dot specializing in YouTube and boxing. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times. A longtime sports writer, he's covered the NFL for CBSSports.com and boxing for Forbes. His work has been noted twice in the Best American Sports Writing book series.