‘The Jeffersons’ Actor Irwin Keyes Dies At 63

‘The Jeffersons’ Actor Irwin Keyes Dies At 63
Roy’s Funeral Don LaVange / Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0
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Character actor Irwin Keyes, best known for playing Wheezy Joe in the romantic black comedy Intolerable Cruelty (2003), passed away Wednesday. He was 63.


According to The Hollywood Reporter, Keyes died after suffering from complications from acromegaly, a rare disorder wherein the growth hormone is produced in overabundance by the pituitary gland, leading to an abnormal growth of hands, feet, and face.

The veteran actor, born in New York City, got his first break in the action thriller “The Warrior” (1979), where he played a police officer. He is also known for his work in Woody Allen’s “Stardust Memories” (1980), Sean S. Cunningham’s “Friday the 13th” (1980), Bryan Levant’s “The Flintstones” (1994), and Rob Zombie’s “House of 1000 Corpses” (2003).

According to People Magazine, Keyes also gave a notable performance as bodyguard Hugo Mojelewski in the American series “The Jeffersons.”

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Rob Zombie paid tribute to Keyes by posting pictures of the actor on Facebook.


I have just heard the terrible news that our friend Irwin Keyes has passed away. Irwin was a cool guy and a big part of the House of 1000 Corpses family. He will be missed by us all.

Posted by Rob Zombie on Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Keyes’ manager spoke of his friend and colleague, “People would look at him and be instantly afraid of him and then they would meet him talk to him and instantly love him. He would play villains, but he had the kindest heart of all.” as reported by Entertainment Weekly.

The two worked together for 20 years.

Keyes is survived by his wife, Tracy Fontaine.

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