Peter Mayhew, actor who played Chewbacca, dead at 74

HOLLYWOOD, CA - MAY 10: Actor Peter Mayhew attends the world premiere of ?Solo: A Star Wars Story? in Hollywood on May 10, 2018. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Disney)

CHICAGO — Peter Mayhew, the actor who played Chewbacca in “Star Wars,” died Tuesday at the age of 74, according to his family.

Mayhew played Chewbacca in the original “Star Wars” trilogy, episode three of the prequels and the new trilogy, and consulted on “The Last Jedi” to teach his successor.

“He put his heart and soul into the role of Chewbacca, and it showed in every frame of the films, from his knock-kneed running, firing his bowcaster from the hip, his bright blue eyes, down to each subtle movement of his head and mouth,” his family said in a statement. “But to him, the Star Wars family meant so much more than a role in a film.”

He is survived by his wife Angie and his three children. Angie will take the helm of the Peter Mayhew Foundation.

A memorial service will be held for family and friends on June 29, and a memorial will be set up for fans in early December in Los Angeles.

In lieu of gifts and flowers, his family asks that well-wishers donate to his foundation so they can continue his efforts to help the community. You can donate here.

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