On Monday, Nov. 28 The University of Las Vegas announced that actor Clarence Gilyard Jr., who worked as a theatre professor for UNLV, passed away at age 66.
The institution’s statement noted, “As an actor, director, and producer, Clarence had a career in television, film, and theatre that spanned more than 30 years.”
Who Was Clarence Gilyard?
Gilyard was best known for his roles as James Trivette in “Walker, Texas Ranger,” as computer hacker Theo in “Die Hard,” as G.I #1 in “The Karate Kid Part II” and as flight officer Marcus ‘Sundown’ Williams in “Top Gun.”
With over 20 acting credits under his belt, Gilyard still found time to earn his bachelor of arts degree from California State University and his master of fine arts degree from Southern Methodist University, located in Dallas, Texas.
Gilyard’s knowledge with the arts had been passed down to students of his who may have been interested in the fine arts industry.
How Did He Die?
Las Vegas Review-Journal revealed that Gilyard was suffering from a long illness; however, no details surrounding his illness were further provided.
In UNLV’s announcement, Dean Uscher added, “His generosity of spirit was boundless – he was always ready to contribute to projects and performances however possible. We remember Clarence with joy and gratitude for all he contributed to the College of Fine Arts, the UNLV community, and, through his impressive personal achievements, to the world.”
The late actor leaves behind his wife, Elena Gilyard, and six children.