Wilford Brimley Dead - 'Cocoon' Actor & Face of Quaker Oats Dies at 85

Brenda Watkins
August 3, 2020

Brimley died at age 85 on Saturday in St. George, Utah after suffering from a kidney issue for two months. The mustachioed Brimley was a familiar face in a number of roles, like his grizzled baseball manager in The Natural opposite Robert Redford's bad-luck phenomenon.

Ron Howard cast him in Cocoon as one of a group of seniors who find themselves revitalized after swimming in a pool containing alien pods and, though he was famously testy on set, the director has praised his ability to improvise.

He was perhaps best known for roles later in his career pitching Quaker Oats and educating folks about diabetes in Liberty Medical commercials. Unfortunately, Wilford Brimley has now left this world at 85 years old. He had a gruff exterior and a tender heart.

Barbara Hershey, who met Brimley on 1995′s "Last of the Dogmen", called him "a wonderful man and actor".

His movie credits date to the 1970s and include Cocoon, Did You hear About The Morgans, The Natural and The Thing.

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Another memorable role came alongside Tom Cruise in the 1993 legal thriller, The Firm, where Brimley played a sinister security official for a law firm. "I was overjoyed making those scenes and especially working with Wilford Brimley". "He taught me a lot on that show", she wrote. "The camera photographs the truth - not what I want it to see, but what it sees".

Brimley was also a talented singer and musician, and has released several albums including "This Time, the Dream's On Me", and "Wilford Brimley with the Jeff Hamilton Trio".

Another side of the actor was his love of jazz.

Deidre Hall and Shannen Doherty, who appeared with Wilford Brimley on the 1980s NBC series Our House, lovingly remembered him in Instagram post Sunday.

He is survived by his wife, Beverly, and his three children.

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