SAM SIMON, a co-creator of "The Simpsons" and animal-rights advocate who made a midlife career shift into philanthropy and channeled much of his personal fortune into social causes, has died. Simon died Sunday at his home in Pacific Palisades, Calif., his agent said. He was 59. He was diagnosed with advanced colon cancer in 2011.

After stints writing for "Taxi," "Cheers" and "The Tracey Ullman Show," Simon helped launch "The Simpsons." He left "The Simpsons" after its fourth season under a deal that rewarded him with ongoing royalties from the show, now in its 26th season.

- Associated Press