Fresh Prince’s James Avery dead at 68

James Avery - How did James Avery Die

Actor James Avery has died at the age of 68 from open heart surgery complications, sources confirm.

James had been in poor health and recently underwent open heart surgery, TMZ reports. He passed away in a Los Angeles hospital on Dec. 31, 2013. Wife Barbara Avery was by his side during his final moments.

James’ career spanned more than 30 years, beginning with an uncredited role in The Blues Brothers and ending with three TV movies in 2013. He was best-known for his role as Uncle Phil on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

James Avery - Fresh Prince - Uncle Phil Will

Alfonso Ribeiro, who played James’ TV son on Fresh Prince, tweeted about James’ passing earlier today…

In terms of his personal life, James served with the Navy in the Vietnam war. He has been married to Barbara Avery since the late 1980s.

UPDATE We originally reported James died at the age of 65. He was 68.

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  • TheFoxSays

    R.I.P. James Avery. 65 You will be missed.

  • Nolagirl504

    That is not how u spell the guys name who played Carlton! Its Alfonso. Editing is essential in journalism. Using the word dead instead of “dies” is so insensitive. Dumb

    • sammy

      Using the article of a deceased individual just to gripe about Starcasm is a bit more insensitive, don’t ya think??

      RIP James Avery <3 You will be missed.

  • Kali

    Life imitating art – “Uncle Phil” had heart problems, too. I remember an episode of Fresh Prince where he had a heart attack.
    Rest in peace.

  • Lanie_Lane

    Umm, he was actually 68 starcasm. He was born in 1945.

  • virgo_aries_mama

    So very sad I loved the Fresh Prince as a kid and Uncle Phil was one of my Favorite characters Rip Uncle Phil

  • Chels Kae

    Uncle Phil: “Do I look like a white guy named Ward”?

    .. Lmao one of my fave lines from my fave episodes. He will be missed and his work will live on for years and years to come..