John Aylward, ER and West Wing actor, dies at 75
His agency, MKS Talent Agency, confirmed the news Thursday, citing his wife, Mary Fields. "This kind man and wonderful actor has left us," the agency said in a statement posted to Twitter. "Very grateful to have known and worked with you, sir."
A native of Seattle, Aylward got his start in the local theater scene and was a founding member of the Empty Space Theatre in the early '70s. His first small-screen role was in the 1976 TV movie The Secret Life of John Chapman.
Aylward was perhaps best known for playing Dr. Donald Anspaugh on ER and former DNC chairman Barry Goodwin on The West Wing. His countless other TV credits also included 3rd Rock From the Sun, Northern Exposure, Alias, Mad Men, American Horror Story,Yellowstone, Shameless, and Briarpatch.
Beyond TV, Aylward appeared in such films as Instinct, A Million Ways to Die in the West, The Way Back, and Water for Elephants and such theater productions as Death of a Salesman, Richard III, The Kentucky Cycle, and City of Conversation.
ER actors Noah Wyle and Eriq La Salle paid tribute to their late costar on Instagram, commenting on a fan account's post about his death. "John was an amazing actor, a gentleman, and a wonderful friend," Wyle wrote. "He'll be missed."
"He truly was a class act," La Salle wrote. "A great gentle spirit who was always gracious and a joy to work with. A very talented human being."