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'Fresh Prince' Dad James Avery Dies

Dead At 68

1/1/2014 10:11 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

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James Avery -- the beloved dad on "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" -- has died at age 68 ... TMZ has learned.

Sources close to the actor tell TMZ he died in a Glendale, CA hospital last night. Avery had undergone open heart surgery and took a turn for the worse late yesterday. 

And we're told ... his wife, Barbara, had been at his bedside but left for a short period of time and when she came back ... she learned he had just died.

Alfonso Ribeiro -- who played Avery's son on "Fresh Prince" -- just posted a message on his Facebook page.

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Avery starred in dozens of TV shows through the years -- shows like "Grey's Anatomy," "The Closer," "L.A. Law," and "The Jeffersons."  This past year, he appeared in three TV movies -- most recently, "Go, Bolivia, Go!" -- but didn't appear to have other projects in the works.

Avery reunited with most of his "Fresh Prince" cast -- including Will Smith --  two years ago at a charity event.

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308 COMMENTS

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106.

Ronald RayGun    

RIP too bad he is gone! His birthday is November 1948 which makes him 65 not 68. Did someone at TMZ flunk basic arithmetic?

203 days ago
107.

Lady_ELLE    

RIP! I enjoyed Mr. Avery as an actor!

203 days ago
108.

sassy4real    

Sad 2014 just came in another celebrity gone RIP God bless all ;(

203 days ago
109.

Sue Morton    

he was 65, not 68 - RIP "Uncle Phil" - thoughts to his family :(

203 days ago
110.

jase    

Damn I was just talking about this dude last night probably exactly when he passed. That's crazy.

203 days ago
111.

thesonshines    

Can we all stop saying so and so "will be missed" when they pass? How bout if we own it and say, "I'll miss" that person. Or maybe even, "I'll miss 'im like hell" or "terribly" or "so much".

203 days ago
112.

preta    

Sorry to hear this condolences to his family and friends.

203 days ago
113.

TuxThePenguin    

In honor if Mr. Avery, please remove the spam postings this story ASAP. thanks.

203 days ago
114.

annie    

Born 1948-11-27 = 65 years old.

RIP JA

203 days ago
115.

James420    

Pretty sure he was 65. You could at least visit wikipedia but that would be too much work I guess

203 days ago
116.

ccbbyrnes    

As a niece of the dearly departed I would like to thank everyone for their condolences. And stand corrective in backing the researchers of tmz, my uncle did turn 68 glorious years old this past November. Born Nov. 27, 1945

203 days ago
117.

portapotty    

TMZ staff is too hungover from New Years Eve to get their facts straight on this guy's birthday and age when he died.

203 days ago
118.

Vegas mommy    

Regardless how old he was he will be missed... Thoughts are prayers go out to his family

203 days ago
119.

Moe Greene    

I am sure due the color of his skin the lawsuit has already been filed.

203 days ago
120.

Cheryl    

Prayers to family and friends.

203 days ago
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