81 (passed away Feb. 24th, 2006)
Jun. 4th, 1924
Joplin, Missouri, USA
Dennis Weaver's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles2004 - Home on the Range
1971 - What's the Matter with Helen?
1966 - Duel at Diablo
1958 - Touch of Evil
1954 - Dragnet
1954 - The Bridges at Toko-Ri
Guest TV Roles
Sergeant Jay Allen
the Sundown Kid
Sgt. Ted Bentley
William Dennis Weaver was an American actor, best known for his work in television, including his role as Matt Dillon's trusty helper Chester Goode on the long-running western series Gunsmoke.
- 'Shelley Winters' (qv) gave him one of his first real breaks by helping him get a part in a stage production of "Come Back, Little Sheba."
- He was a struggling actor in Hollywood in 1955, earning $60 a week delivering flowers when he was offered $300 a week for a role in a new CBS television series, _"Gunsmoke" (1955)_ (qv). After nine years as Chester, who he played with a stiff-legged gait, he was earning $9,000 a week.
- Inducted (as a cast member of _"Gunsmoke" (1955)_ (qv)) into the Hall of Great Western Performers of the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in 1981.
- Was a committed environmentalist; Weaver's home near Santa Fe, NM, is constructed almost entirely out of recycled materials.
- Lost a daughter-in-law, Lynne Ann Weaver (who was married to his son, 'Robby Weaver (I)' (qv)), to a July 2003 Santa Monica, California, car accident that killed more than eight people.
- Placed 6th in the 1948 Olympic Trials in the Decathlon. 'Bob Mathias' (qv) placed first; Weaver won the final event, the 1500 meter run.
- Served as the president of "Love Is Feeding Everyone" (LIFE), which fed 150,000 needy people a week in Los Angeles County. Also, founded the Institute of Ecolonomics, which sought solutions to economic and environmental problems.
- In 1958, he formed a singing trio with 'Milburn Stone' (qv) and 'Amanda Blake (I)' (qv). In 1960, the trio broke the house record for the Albuquerque Arena during the New Mexico State Fair.