Actor Roy Scheider, best known for playing the Sheriff in “Jaws”, has died at the age of 75. According to reports, Scheider was diagnosed with myeloma in 2004, and had subsequently undergone a bone marrow transplant. He passed away Sunday at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences hospital in Little Rock. No cause of death has been disclosed.
A brief bio:
Born in Orange, N.J., he competed in baseball and boxing before turning to theater in college, where he studied drama at Rutgers and Franklin and Marshall. After a stint in the military, he went onstage in New York, appearing with the New York Shakespeare Festival and winning an Obie for the play “Stephen D.”
After appearing on soap “The Edge of Night,” he launched his film career with “The Curse of the Living Corpse.” His material started to improve with “Star!,” “Paper Lion,” “Stiletto” and “Puzzle of a Downfall Child,” although he continued to guest on soaps such as “Love of Life” and “Secret Storm.”
His career took a major leap forward when he co-starred with Jane Fonda in “Klute” and then alongside Gene Hackman in “The French Connection,” netting his first Oscar nom for the role. He played a cop again in actioner “The Seven-Ups.”
I was too young to really appreciate most of Scheider’s major roles, but to me, he’ll always be the guy who made Blue Thunder fly.
Roy Scheider is survived by his wife Brenda and two daughters and a son.
According to Reuters, Scheider died of complications from multiple myeloma, a cancer of the blood cells, for which he has been undergoing treatment for since 2004.