Actor Arthur Franz dead at 86

June 19, 2006 at 12:55 PM

LOS ANGELES, June 19 (UPI) -- Character actor Arthur Franz has died from heart failure and emphysema at St. John's Hospital in Oxnard Calif., at age 86.

Franz is best known for his role in the 1957 film "Hellcats of the Navy," which also featured Ronald Reagan and his wife, Nancy Davis, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday.

Usually playing a sympathetic and friendly character, Franz, in the prime of his career had very steady work.

He had one starring role, which earned him the best reviews of his career, in the 1952 blockbuster "The Sniper" in which he played an ex-soldier who goes on a rampage in San Francisco. Franz played a character the exact opposite of his usual screen roles.

For nearly 30 years, he often had guest roles on such popular television series as "Perry Mason," "The FBI," "The Mod Squad," "The Virginian" and "Rawhide."

Survivors include his fourth wife, Sharon; daughters Gina Martenson and Melissa Franz, and his son, Michael.

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