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Who is James Hampton's wife Mary Deese? ‘Teen Wolf’ star dies at 84 due to complications from Parkinson's disease

Hampton is survived by his wife Mary Deese, who he married in 2002 and children James, Andrea and Frank and grandchildren
James Hampton who starred in 'The Longest Yard' dies at 84 (IMDb)
James Hampton who starred in 'The Longest Yard' dies at 84 (IMDb)

'The Longest Yard' star James Hampton has passed away at the age of 84. He reportedly died at his home in Fort Worth in Texas on Wednesday, April 7. Complications from Parkinson's disease were stated as the reason for his death by a family spokesperson. 

Hampton was best known for his portrayal of the handyman LeRoy B Simpson in  'The Doris Day Show', as a villain in 'Mannix', 'The Cat From Outer Space', 'The China Syndrome', and 'Sling Blade' among others. He played the bumbling bugler Hannibal Dobbs on 'F Troop', the prison inmate Caretaker in the original 'The Longest Yard' and Michael J Fox's furry father in 'Teen Wolf'. Game show host Randy West wrote a touching obituary to Hampton on Facebook saying: "Those who didn't know his name, certainly knew his sweet face..." West wrote. "And what you saw is what you got." West confirmed that his friend died with his wife by his side "a long bout with the degenerative disease Lewy Body Dementia in which protein deposits on nerve cells in the brain affect thinking, memory and movement."


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The actor was born in Oklahoma City on July 9, 1936 and was raised in Dallas. His parents owned a dry-cleaning store. After pursuing theater arts major at the University of North Texas, he was enlisted into the US Army. He reportedly was in the cavalry at Fort Knox before seeing duty overseas. After the service, he studied acting with Baruch Lumet, father of Sidney Lumet, at the Knox Street Theater in Dallas and appeared in plays at the Casa Mañana Theatre in Fort Worth before moving to New York. He auditioned for 'The Cliff Dwellers' in 1962 and got the job when he offered to build the sets as well. The film surprisingly was nominated for an Oscar, giving Hampton his first trip to Los Angeles, where he was signed by prominent agent Walter Kohner. His autobiography, 'What? And Give Up Show Business?' was published in February.

Hampton is survived by his second wife Mary Deese, who he married in 2002; children James, Andrea and Frank and grandchildren.

Mary Deese (IMDb)

Who is Mary Deese?

Mary Deese began her acting career in Dallas, according to IMDb. She is said to have studied acting with Lou Diamond Phillips at Adam Roark's Film Actor's Lab.  Her acting journey in LA began with sitcoms such as 'Family Matters' and 'Fresh Prince of Bel Air'. She had a recurring role as Kristy Koy on 'General Hospital'. 

Deese's other notable television roles are from shows including 'Lady Dynamite', 'Wisdom of the Crowd', 'Bosch', 'Scandal MAde me Famous' and 'Dallas'. Her film credits include 'Big Stone Gap', 'Thunder Road', 'The last Assassins' and 'Harold and Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay'. 

Hampton's fans took to Twitter to mourn the loss of the veteran actor. One wrote, "I really enjoyed watching The Longest Yard so much both Burt Reynolds and James Hampton were so amazing in that movie, I can’t believe how many actors passed away that were in that movie. Mike Henry and Richard Kiel were also in that movie." Another added, "Oh. I’m so sorry. My condolences to the family. James Hampton was a beloved character in everyone’s home during TV’s heyday. Brought many a smile to millions."

One Twitter user wrote, "So sad to hear this. A truly consummate character actor. I’ve been secretly hoping to cast James in a film since was local and my own filmmaking career has been recently revived. There just wasn’t enough time. Very nice and kind man. Rest In Peace, sir. #JamesHampton." Adding to the above tweets one expressed, "Hate to hear the news about actor, James Hampton, passing away. He was great as character Caretaker in The Longest Yard. He worked on several projects with his friend, Burt Reynolds."