James Arness passes

Obituaries for folks in the entertainment world that have come to the end of the road.

James Arness passes

Postby Paul P » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:47 pm

James Arness, a bigger-than-life actor who kept the peace as Marshall Matt Dillon on 'Gunsmoke' for its 20-year run, died Friday of natural causes at his home in Brentwood, Calif., his family told the Los Angeles Times. He was 88.

'Gunsmoke' debuted on CBS in 1955 and ran until 1975, in the process making Arness one of the more enduring stars on television and the Matt Dillon character one of its most beloved and trusted.

The 6 foot 7 Arness towered over the cast, including Dillon's deputy, Chester, played by Dennis Weaver. Other supporting stars included Amanda Blake as Kitty and Milburn Stone as Doc Adams.
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Re: James Arness passes

Postby jon » Fri Jun 03, 2011 7:15 pm

Amazingly, he outlived his younger brother, Peter Graves, of Mission Impossible fame, by just over a year.

As for James, he served in World War II in the Army, because his incredible 6'7" height disqualified him from his goal of being a naval fighter pilot; the height limit was 6'2".

Following the War, his first job after college was as a radio announcer, the beginning of his performing career.

Other than actors like Andre the Giant and others who suffered from Acromegaly, I cannot name a taller actor than James Arness.
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Re: James Arness passes

Postby radiofan » Fri Jun 03, 2011 7:16 pm

Here's a bit more info and a link to some video ...

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/obi ... story.html
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