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John Ericson, Star of ‘Honey West’ and Classic MGM Films, Dies at 93

Ericson appeared in the original production of ”Stalag 17“ and alongside actors like Spencer Tracy and Elizabeth Taylor

John Ericson, a star of Hollywood’s Golden Age who appeared in multiple MGM films and in the 1960s TV show “Honey West,” died in Santa Fe, New Mexico, of pneumonia on Sunday. He was 93.

Born Joseph Meibes in Dusseldorf, Germany, Ericson emigrated with his family to the United States to escape the Nazis as they rose to power. Ericson trained in acting at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York and soon appeared in the original production of “Stalag 17” in 1951.

Shortly after that, Ericson signed a contract with MGM and made his cinematic debut alongside Pier Angeli in “Teresa,” playing a World War II veteran struggling to cope with post-war life after marrying a woman he met in Italy. He continued to take on supporting roles in MGM films through the ’50s, starring alongside stars like Elizabeth Taylor in “Rhapsody,” Spencer Tracy in “Bad Day at Black Rock,” and Barbara Stanwyck in “Forty Guns.”

Starting in the 1960s, Ericson made the move to television where he would stay for much of his career. His most famous was alongside Anne Francis in the 1965 ABC crime drama “Honey West.” While Francis played the exotic, Bond-esque private eye Honey West, Ericson played her partner, ex-Marine Sam Bolt, who like her was an expert in judo and karate. Ericson also made appearances on shows like “The Fugitive,” “Bonanza,” “General Hospital” and “CHiPs”

Ericson is survived by his wife, Karen and daughter, Nicole.