Your parents and grandparents will remember him from Maverick and The Rockford Files.
Actor James Garner died of natural causes Saturday evening at his home in the Brentwood area of Los Angeles. He was 86 years old.
The Associated Press reports that police responded to a call around 8 p.m. and confirmed Garner's identity from family members. Garner had suffered a stroke in May 2008, just weeks after his 80th birthday.
"His quick-witted avoidance of conflict provided a refreshingly new take on the American hero, contrasting with the steely heroics of John Wayne and the fast trigger of Clint Eastwood. It was in 1957 when the ABC network, desperate to compete on ratings-rich Sunday night, scheduled Maverick against CBS's powerhouse The Ed Sullivan Show and NBC's The Steve Allen Show. Maverick soon out polled them both. At a time when the networks were crowded with hard-eyed, traditional Western heroes, Bret Maverick provided a fresh breath of air. With his sardonic tone and his eagerness to talk his way out of a squabble rather than pull out his six-shooter, the con-artist Westerner seemed to scoff at the genre's values. "
"However in his 2011 memoir, The Garner Files, he provided some amusing and enlightening clues, including his penchant for bluntly expressed opinions and a practice for decking people who said something nasty to his face -- including an obnoxious fan and an abusive stepmother. They all deserved it, Garner declared in his book."
"When he received the Screen Actors Guild's lifetime achievement award in 2005, he quipped, 'I'm not at all sure how I got here.' "
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