Fresh Prince of Bel Air star James Avery passed away in a Glendale, CA hospital on New Years eve. Avery suffered complications from open heart surgery he had in November, he was 68.
Avery, who stood more than 6 feet tall, played the family patriarch who was a wealthy attorney and judge on the popular TV comedy that launched the acting career of Will Smith as Banks’ troublemaking nephew.
Avery grew up in Atlantic City, N.J., and served in the Navy in Vietnam in the late 1960s. After returning to the states, he settled in California and studied drama and literature at the University of California at San Diego.
He is survived by his wife, Barbara, and stepson Kevin Waters.