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Clarence Williams III’s Cause of Death Reported as an Illness

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Unfortunately, the great actor Clarence Williams III’s cause of death is reported as an illness. His manager Allan Mindel confirmed that he died after a battle with colon cancer at the age of 81.

He played the cool undercover cop Linc Hayes on the counterculture series “The Mod Squad,” and Prince’s father in “Purple Rain.”

Clarence Williams III was born in New York in 1939. His father was a musician, his mother, Eva Taylor, was a singer and actress, and his grandfather was a jazz composer and pianist.

Actor Clarence Williams III died at the age of 81

Williams worked over five decades in theater and television. He started his career on Broadway after a stint as a paratrooper and received a Tony nomination for his role in 1964 “Slow Dance on the Killing Ground.”

Williams appeared in:

  • “Night and Day” in 1979
  • Purple Rain,” in 1984
  • “Against the Wall,”
  • “Reindeer Games,”
  • and “Tales from the Crypt.”

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Actor Clarence Williams III’s Cause of Death Revealed

Clarence Williams III died Friday, June 4, at his home in Los Angeles. He could command a variety of genres, including comedy. He had a role as the FBI agent in David Lynch’s “Twin Peaks,” who tells Agent Cooper he has been suspended. He also had many television appearances on everything from “Miami Vice,” “Hill Street Blues,” “Everybody Hates Chris,” and “Justified.”

Other film roles included:

  • “Half Baked,”
  • “I’m Gonna Git You Sucka,”
  • “Tales from the Hood,”
  • “Deep Cover,”
  • “Sugar Hill,”
  • “The General’s Daughter,”
  • “The Butler,” and
  • “American Gangster.”
Clarence Williams III's cause of death is revealed as an illness

Williams III was married to the actress Gloria Foster from 1967 to 1984. He never fretted over his association with “The Mod Squad,” though.

“All most people know about me is the two hours they’ve invested in a movie theater or the time spent in front of their TV. There’s so much entertainment out there right now, it’s difficult to break through and become part of the national consciousness. It’s nice to be recognized, and I have no problem with it at all,” he said.

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Reactions to Actor Clarence Williams III’s Death

Following this tragic news, several fans, friends, and supporters reacted and stated their condolences on social media websites.

For tributes and prayers, please kindly scroll down and use the comment box to share your feelings about the heartbreaking news. His family needs privacy; please respect them during this difficult time.

Rusty Cundieff, “Tales from the Hood” director, wrote about his sadness over Williams’ passing on Twitter. “His artistry and sheer coolness was extraordinary. I will forever be in his debt for his brilliant performance in Tales From the Hood. Loved working with him! Blessed travels good sir!”

Peyton Reed also tweeted that he worked with Clarence Williams in 1997 on the TV movie “The Love Bug.” “I had grown up watching him as Linc in ‘The Mod Squad’ and thought he was the epitome of cool. Turns out he was. Rest In Peace, Clarence.”

One of his fans wrote on Twitter that “The entertainment world lost an incredible actor today: RIP Clarence Williams III. I can’t forget how he wasn’t nominated for ANY of the major Best Supporting Actor award for his brilliant and unforgettable performance in 1994’s movie, “Sugar Hill”. Still work to be done.”

Actor Clarence Williams III died of an illness

Lenny Kravitz wrote that when he was a kid growing up in NYC Clarence Williams III was a face on TV that he “identified with and that inspired me. From the Mod Squad, to Purple Rain and Sugar Hill, he always performed with dynamic energy. Rest in power, king.”

An online user wrote: “Mod Squad 1968-1973. I watched every episode during my high school years. RIP Clarence. He was groovy!”

Another tweeted: “I never watched Mod Squad (the only cop show I liked was Columbo, because he only went after rich people) but Clarence Williams III was solid in every movie I saw him in. My favorite, of course, was Tales From The Hood. RIP.”


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