The Dukes Of Hazzard Actors You Didn’t Know Already Passed Away
via Facts Verse / Youtube
If you’re a viewer from a specific age group, the voice of Waylon Jennings likely triggers nostalgic memories of sitting around the family TV set, tuning in to CBS on Friday nights during the 70s and 80s. Those were the days when the network showcased one of its flagship shows, The Dukes of Hazzard. The series revolved around two carefree brothers from rural Georgia who always narrowly escaped the clutches of the law.
Originally conceived as a nine-episode mid-season mini-series to fill a gap in CBS’s lineup, The Dukes of Hazzard exceeded expectations, running for 146 episodes over six seasons. Adapted from the relatively obscure southern action-comedy film Moonrunners, the TV show became a hit despite its initial modest intentions.
The program concluded in 1985, and over the years, several cast members have sadly passed away. In this article, we pay tribute to these fallen performers from The Dukes of Hazzard.
1. James Best (Passed Away in 2015 at Age 88):
James Best, remembered by fans as Sheriff Roscoe P. Coltrane enjoyed a prolific six-decade acting career. Before becoming Sheriff Coltrane, Best appeared in numerous westerns and iconic TV shows like The Fugitive and The Twilight Zone.
2. Sorrel Book (Died in 1994):
Best known for his role as the nefarious Boss Hogg, Sorrel Book, originally a straight-up Yankee from Buffalo, had a long and successful career in the industry. Besides The Dukes of Hazzard, Book earned an Emmy nod for his performance on Dr. Kildare and appeared in sitcoms like All in the Family and Soap.
3. Denver Pyle (Passed Away on Christmas Day 1997 at Age 77):
Denver Pyle, who portrayed Uncle Jesse, the wise father figure on the show, received his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame a week before his death. Known for his dramatic roles in Westerns, Pyle also showcased his comedic talent in roles like Briscoe Darling on The Andy Griffith Show.
4. Christopher Mayer (Died in 2011 at Age 57):
Christopher Mayer, best known for replacing the original Luke Duke for part of the fifth season, faced challenges as the show tried to write off the characters of Bo and Luke Duke. The attempt led to a decline in ratings, prompting the return of the original actors.
5. Peggy Rea (Passed Away in 2011 at Age 89):
Peggy Rea, recognized as Lulu Hogg, was more than just the wife of Boss Hogg. Her character was a formidable presence on the series, and her decades-long career included over 100 acting credits, with notable roles in I Love Lucy, The Waltons, and Grace Under Fire.
6. Don Pedro Kali (Died in 2017 at Age 79):
Don Pedro Kali, who played Sheriff Big Ed Little, had a notable career before The Dukes of Hazzard. Known for his roles in Daniel Boone and George Lucas’s THX 1138, Kali was also involved in 1970s blaxploitation films and had a passion for discus throwing.