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'Seinfeld's' Uncle Leo Dies at 88

Veteran character Len Lesser also appeared in "The Outlaw Josey Wales" and "The Birdman of Alcatraz"

Len Lesser may never have been a household name, but thanks to his scene-stealing role on "Seinfeld," he will forever be known to a generation of television watchers as Uncle Leo. 

The veteran character actor died Wednesday in Burbank, Calif. from cancer-related pneumonia, his family announced. He was 88.

Lesser's nasal-voiced Leo, became a fixture on the hit NBC sitcom, in which he would characteristically greet Seinfeld's character with an emphatic "Jerry! Hello!"

From 1991 to 1998, Lasser appeared in 15 episodes of "Seinfeld," in which he was seen shoplifting, close talking or expounding on elaborate conspiracy theories.

However, Lesser had a long career in film and television before his recurring role on "Seinfeld." His stooped shoulders and deep set eyes made him the perfect heavy or eccentric in films such as "The Outlaw Josey Wales," "The Birdman of Alcatraz," and "Kelly's Heroes." 

On the small screen, Lesser appeared on "Get Smart," "The Munsters" and "ER," among other programs. 

He is survived by his daughter, Michele; son, David; daughter-in-law, Julie; and grandchildren, Jonathan, Kayla, and Mayah.