Noted character actor Harry Carey Jr. has passed away

Harry Carey Jr and John Wayne in "The Searchers"
Harry Carey Jr and John Wayne in “The Searchers”

Yet another of Hollywood’s best character actors,  Harry Carey Jr., has died.  He was 91 years old.  The son of actor Harry Carey and actress Olivia Carey, he was born in Saugus, CA.  He appeared in over 90 films during his career and in many TV shows and made for TV movies.

Nicknamed “Dobe” because when he was a boy his hair was the color of adobe, Harry Carey Jr. was in 11 films with the late John Wayne.  That list includes Red River, The Searchers and Big Jake.  He was a favorite of director John Ford and also appeared in four films for the legendary Howard Hawks.  He suspected that the reason his scenes from Rio Bravo were cut was because he called the director “Howard” rather than “Mr. Hawks”.

His first film was 1946’s Rolling Home and his last was 1996’s The Sunchaser.  The list of notable films he had roles in includes Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Mister Roberts, and 1985’s Mask.  He had a small role in a saloon scene in Back to the Future Part III and in 1993’s Tombstone.  He was in a number of television westerns such as Bonanza, Gunsmoke, The Virginian and the short-lived Branded.  His other television credits include appearances on Banacek, B.L. Stryker, Knight Rider, Dallas, CHiPs and many more.

Character actor Harry Carey Jr in later life
Character actor Harry Carey Jr in later life

He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his work in television, was inducted into the Hall of Great Western Performers in 2003 and received a “Golden Boot” from the Motion Picture & Television Fund Foundation.

In his later years he tried his hand at documenting the history of some of the work he had done in film, writing and producing a documentary and some video shorts on John Wayne.  He wrote a book in 1994, “Company of Heroes:  My Life As An Actor in the John Ford Stock Company”.


He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Marilyn Carey and four children.

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