Peter Mayhew, the actor best known for his role as Chewbacca in the Star Wars series of science fiction films, died April 30 at his North Texas home, according to a statement from his family.
Mayhew, who was born in London on May 19, 1944, died Tuesday evening with his family by his side. He was 74.
Mayhew, who stood 7 feet 2 inches tall, was the giant man inside the furry suit portraying the Wookie Chewbacca in five Star Wars films beginning with the original trilogy released from 1977 to 1983. Mayhew put on the suit again for 2005’s Revenge of the Sith and then again most recently for 2015’s The Force Awakens, when he was reunited with Harrison Ford and their iconic spaceship the Millennium Falcon.
In addition to films, Mayhew voiced the character in a number of cartoons and video games.
Mayhew was expected to appear Friday, Saturday and Sunday at FAN EXPO Dallas.
Mayhew, who lived in Boyd northwest of Fort Worth, is survived by his wife Angie and three children.
There will be a memorial service for friends and family on June 29; details of that service have not been released.
According to IMDB, Mayhew has written two books, “Growing Up Giant” and “My Favorite Giant” and founded a non-profit 501(c)3 charity organization called “The Peter Mayhew Foundation” and is the purveyor of chewbacca.com.