By Nick Romano
December 23, 2017 at 01:37 PM EST

Matt Damon’s father, Kent Damon, has died after a lengthy battle with cancer, the actor’s rep confirmed to EW. He was 74.

Kent was diagnosed in 2010 with a form of plasma cell cancer called multiple myeloma. Matt took a break from various public appearances over the past few months due to his dad’s condition. For one, he returned to Boston instead of attending this year’s Britannia Awards in England, where he was honored with the Stanley Kubrick Award for Excellence in Film.

The actor’s publicist told The Boston Globe that Kent died on Dec. 14.

While out promoting his latest film, Downsizing, Matt gave an update in an interview with Extra. “It’s been a slow unfolding; my dad’s sick, so that’s been a process we’re going through,” Matt said. He added, “We’ll take any prayers you got, so throw ’em up there.”

Matt has since helped raise awareness and money for cancer research and treatments. At an event in 2011 at the Massachusetts General Hospital, the Martian star said (via PEOPLE), “My family is so grateful for the care you’ve given us. It’s deeply humbling to see how many people here are committing their lives to helping others.”

“He’s all you could ever for ask for in a son. It’s been a wonderful ride being his dad,” Kent had said of Matt.

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