James Arness dead at 88


Actor James Arness, who starred in one of the most successful TV series of all time, “Gunsmoke,” has died at 88. The announcement on his official website said he died of natural causes.

A private funeral is planned by the family. They asked that donations be made to United Cerebral Palsy in his name.

While Arness appeared in numerous movies and TV shows, he is best known for his role of Marshal Matt Dillon in the TV series Gunsmoke, which ran on CBS from 1955 to 1975. “Over the 20 years of Gunsmoke he worked with hundreds of actors, some of them just starting out like Harrison Ford, Burt Reynolds, Charles Bronson, and Betty Davis,” the website noted.

A younger brother used a stage name and also became a major acting star. Peter Graves died last year at age 83.