Jimmie F. Skaggs

Thesp

Veteran actor Jimmie Skaggs died in Los Angeles on June 6 of lung cancer. He was 59.

Born in Hot Springs, Ark., he graduated from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York.

Part Choctaw, Skaggs often portrayed Native American characters in film and television. Among them was Hardstriker in “Tecumseh” and Bes Das, the Commanche translator in Larry McMurtry’s “Dead Man’s Walk.” He was nominated for best supporting actor by First Americans in the Arts for his work on “Diagnosis Murder” and the movie of the week, “Blue Rodeo.”

Skaggs appeared in films as “Catch Me If You Can,” “Hollow Man,” “Lethal Weapon,” “Pink Cadillac,” “Underworld” and “Cutthroat Island.” He co-starred in the NBC miniseries “Lucky Chances” and guested on numerous TV shows. A stage actor as well, Jimmie also performed the role of Eugene in the national tour of “Grease” for five years, setting the record for the most performances.

In 2000, Jimmie and his wife, actress and director, Virginia Morris, founded ShapeShifter Productions, producing plays including “Mimi’s Guide,” “Anton’s Abandoned Story Cycle” and “Let the Rocks Speak.”

His last role as on a recent episode of USA Network’s “Monk.”

He is survived by his wife, Virginia, his mother, two sisters and two brothers.

Donations may be made to the Jimmie F. Skaggs Fund at First Stage, Hollywood, P.O. Box 38280, Los Angeles, Calif. 90038.

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