Fred Ward, ‘The Right Stuff’ and ‘Tremors’ actor, dead at 79

Fred Ward has sadly passed away at the age of 79.
credit: REUTERS / Alamy
As reported by Variety, the veteran actor's passing was confirmed by his publicist, Ron Hoffmann. No cause of death has been revealed at this time.

TMZ has also stated that Hoffmann requests that, as per Ward's wishes, any memorial donations be made to the Boston University's Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy Center.

Ward is perhaps best known for his appearances in the western-themed monster horror comedy Tremors (1990), and its sequel Tremors 2: Aftershocks (1996)
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Born on December 30, 1942, Ward would make his screen debut in Roberto Rossellini's 1973 miniseries The Age of the Medici. One year later, he gained mainstream attention with his role as astronaut Gus Grissom in the 1974 movie The Right Stuff.

As well as the Tremors movies, Ward also gained notoriety for his roles in movies like Escape from Alcatraz, Southern Comfort, The Right Stuff, Swing Shift, and Short Cuts.

Ward also made several appearances in hit television shows, appearing in ER and Abby Lockhart's father, as well as Grey’s Anatomy and United States of Tara.

Ward continued acting until 2018, and enjoyed painting in his retirement, his publicist says.
Ward (R) and Kevin Bacon in Tremors. Credit: Collection Christophel / Alamy
Following news of the actor's passing, many fans have taken to social media to share their memory's of Ward and pay tribute to the late star.

Writing on Twitter, one fan said: "Another all time great leaves us. RIP Fred Ward. Tremors, The Right Stuff, Short Cuts, Miami Blues... His gruff, down to earth tough guy persona, so many great films, I always adored seeing him in anything."

"RIP, Fred Ward, a great character actor whose big shot at leading man status, Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins, unfortunately flopped, but who kept giving great, lived-in performances for the rest of his career," another fan tweeted.

A third added: "RIP Fred Ward. His performance in Tremors will always be one of my all time favorites. Thanks for all the memories."
Ward as Corporal Lonnie Reece in the 1921 movie Southern Comfort. Credit: TCD/Prod.DB / Alamy
Ward is survived by his wife of 27 years, Marie-France Ward, and his son Django, whom he shared with ex-wife Silvia Ward.

Our thoughts are with Ward's family, friends, and fans at this time.

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