Actor John Beasley, Known for ‘Everwood’ and ‘The Soul Man,’ Dies at 79

The character actor also appeared in films like ‘Rudy’ and ‘The Apostle’

John Beasley
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John Beasley, an actor best known for his roles on the TV shows ‘Everwood’ and ‘The Soul Man,’ died Tuesday at the age of 79. 

Beasley’s son Mike shared the news of his father’s death on Facebook.

“Man…you know this is a part of life…but that doesn’t make it any easier,” Mike W. Beasley wrote above a photo of him and his father. “I lost my best friend today. They say you shouldn’t ever meet your heroes because they don’t turn out to be who you thought they were. That is so wrong. My hero was my father. Thank you for everything. I hope I made you proud. Love you more.” 

The character actor died in a hospital in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, where he’d been undergoing tests on his liver before his condition unexpectedly worsened, Beasley’s son Tyrone told The Hollywood Reporter

Born June 26, 1943, Beasley didn’t land his first acting gig until 1989, when he played a henchman in the film ‘Rapid Fire.’ Beasley’s career spanned more than three decades, during which he starred in notable shows like ‘Brewster Place,’ ‘CSI,’ ‘Judging Amy,’ ‘Treme,’ ‘Boston Legal’ and, most recently, ‘Your Honor.’  His most notable roles were that of Irv Driver, the bus driver on the WB drama ‘Everwood,’ and Barton Bellentine, father of Cedric the Entertainer’s character on the TV Land comedy series ‘The Soul Man.’ 

Beasley also appeared in films like ‘The Apostle,’ ‘The Mighty Ducks,’ ‘Rudy,’ ‘Little Big League,’ ‘The General’s Daughter,’ ‘Firestarter’ and ‘V.I. Warshawski.’