100s of titles, one news app for just $10 a month.
Dive Deeper:
Actor Fred Ward, of 'Tremors,' 'The Right Stuff' fame, dies
Fred Ward, a veteran actor who brought a gruff tenderness to tough-guy roles in “The Right Stuff,” “The Player” and…
Fred Ward: The Right Stuff and Tremors actor dies at 79
Actor also featured in season two of ‘True Detective’ as the father of Colin Farrell’s Ray Velcoro
Fred Ward, starred in ‘The Right Stuff,’ ‘Remo Williams,’ ‘Tremors,’ dies at 79
Ward memorably played Mercury 7 astronaut Virgil “Gus” Grissom in 1983’s space epic “The Right Stuff” but also tackled giant…
The Right Stuff actor Fred Ward dies aged 79
Golden Globe winning actor Fred Ward has died at the age of 79.
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Veteran actor Fred Ward, star of The Right Stuff and Tremors, dies aged 79
The character actor was part of the ensemble casts of Robert Altman’s films Short Cuts and The Player, and had…
Actor Fred Ward dies. He had the right stuff in movies from 'Tremors' to 'The Player'
Ward died on Sunday at age 79.
Get all your news in one place

Actor Fred Ward, of Tremors and The Right Stuff fame, dies aged 79

By By Associated Press Reporter
Fred Ward, a veteran actor who brought a gruff tenderness to tough-guy roles in such films as The Right Stuff, The Player and Tremors has died (Chris Pizzello/AP)

Fred Ward, a veteran actor who brought a gruff tenderness to tough-guy roles in films Tremors, The Right Stuff and The Player has died. He was 79.

Ward died on Sunday, his publicist Ron Hofmann said on Friday. No cause or place of death was disclosed per the family’s wishes.

A former boxer, lumberjack in Alaska and short-order cook who served in the US Air Force, Ward was a San Diego native who was part Cherokee. One early big role was alongside Clint Eastwood in 1979’s Escape From Alcatraz.

Fred Ward died on Sunday at the age of 79 (Chris Pizzello/AP)

Ward earned a Golden Globe and shared the Venice Film Festival ensemble prize for his performance in Robert Altman’s Short Cuts, and played the title character in Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins. He also reached new heights playing Mercury 7 astronaut Virgil “Gus” Grissom in 1983′s Academy Award-nominated film The Right Stuff.

In the horror-comedy Tremors, Ward paired with Kevin Bacon to play a pair of repairmen who end up saving a hardscrabble Nevada desert community beset by giant underground snakes.

Bacon reacted to the news of Ward’s death by tweeting: “So sad to hear about Fred Ward. When it came to battling underground worms I couldn’t have asked for a better partner. I will always remember chatting about his love of Django Reinhardt and jazz guitar during our long hot days in the high desert. Rest In Peace Fred.”

Ward’s other roles included a rumpled cop chasing a psychotic criminal played by Alec Baldwin in George Armitage’s Miami Blues.

Ward played President Ronald Reagan in the 2009 Cold War espionage thriller Farewell and had a supporting role in the 2013 action flick 2 Guns, starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg.

Video of the Day

He also reteamed with Altman for the part of a studio security chief in the director’s 1992 Hollywood satire The Player, and played a union activist and Meryl Streep’s workmate in Mike Nichols’ Silkwood in 1983.

On the small screen, he had recurring roles on NBC’s ER playing the father of Maura Tierney’s Abby Lockhart in 2006-2007 and guest starred on such series as Grey’s Anatomy, Leverage and United States of Tara.

Ward most recently appeared in the second season of HBO’s True Detective as the retired cop father of Colin Farrell’s Detective Ray Velcoro.

Ward is survived by his wife of 27 years, Marie-France Ward, and his son, Django Ward.

What is inkl?
The world’s most important news, from 100+ trusted global sources, in one place.
Morning Edition
Your daily
news overview

Morning Edition ensures you start your day well informed.

No paywalls, no clickbait, no ads
Enjoy beautiful reading

Content is only half the story. The world's best news experience is free from distraction: ad-free, clickbait-free, and beautifully designed.

Expert Curation
The news you need to know

Stories are ranked by proprietary algorithms based on importance and curated by real news journalists to ensure that you receive the most important stories as they break.

Dive Deeper:
Actor Fred Ward, of 'Tremors,' 'The Right Stuff' fame, dies
Fred Ward, a veteran actor who brought a gruff tenderness to tough-guy roles in “The Right Stuff,” “The Player” and…
Fred Ward: The Right Stuff and Tremors actor dies at 79
Actor also featured in season two of ‘True Detective’ as the father of Colin Farrell’s Ray Velcoro
Fred Ward, starred in ‘The Right Stuff,’ ‘Remo Williams,’ ‘Tremors,’ dies at 79
Ward memorably played Mercury 7 astronaut Virgil “Gus” Grissom in 1983’s space epic “The Right Stuff” but also tackled giant…
The Right Stuff actor Fred Ward dies aged 79
Golden Globe winning actor Fred Ward has died at the age of 79.
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Veteran actor Fred Ward, star of The Right Stuff and Tremors, dies aged 79
The character actor was part of the ensemble casts of Robert Altman’s films Short Cuts and The Player, and had…
Actor Fred Ward dies. He had the right stuff in movies from 'Tremors' to 'The Player'
Ward died on Sunday at age 79.
Get all your news in one place