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Home » Clarence Gilyard, ‘Top Gun’ and ‘Die Hard’ star passes away aged 66

Clarence Gilyard, ‘Top Gun’ and ‘Die Hard’ star passes away aged 66

Clarence Gilyard eventually became a Professor of Theatre and Film Studies.

Actor and fine arts professor, Clarence Gilyard recently passed away at the age of 66. Details of his death haven’t been revealed yet.

The University of Nevada Shared The Sorrowful News

Clarence Gilyard was hired as an Associate Professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2006. Little did he know this place would go on to become his second home. Gilyard’s tenure as a professor and instructor teaching courses on theater and film at the the university had an invaluable impact on numerous students. It was a poetic ‘circle of life’ moment when Dean of University of Nevada, Nancy Usher shared the sad news of the actor’s demise in a statement. Clarence Gilyard is remembered as a man comprising generosity of spirit that was “boundless.”

A Life Dedicated To Giving Back To Theatre

Dean Usher stated, “His students were deeply inspired by him, as were all who knew him. He had many extraordinary talents and was extremely well-known in the university through his dedication to teaching and his professional accomplishments.” Gilyard distanced himself from on-screen roles or fame when he took up the role of a professor. He decided to give back to theatre. His contribution to the University and theatre as a field was not left unrecognised.

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A Career to Remember

Clarence Gilyard was born on December 24, 1955, in Moses Lake, Washington. He later moved to Los Angeles to pursue acting. He would go on to play the lead character in shows such as ‘Matlock’ and ‘Walker, Texas Ranger’. But he is best remembered for his roles in ‘Die Hard’ and ‘Top Gun’. Top Gun (1986) was Gilyard’s movie debut, where he played the role of Pilot Sundown and starred alongside Tom Cruise.

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Clarence Gilyard Remains In The Hearts and Memories of Many

Clarence Gilyard might be gone but he will forever be remembered. He leaves behind his wife, Elena Gilyard, his six children and a plethora of grateful students of theatre. An actor, professor, husband, father and most importantly, an avid lover of theatre.

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