The popular actor is best known for his role as Andrew, the “Angel of Death,” in the long-running television series, “Touched by an Angel.” The series enjoyed a 9-year run beginning in 1994.
According to reports, Dye was found dead at his San Francisco home from apparent heart failure.
Dye’s unexpected death received extensive coverage in a news report from WREG, a CBS-affiliated TV station in Memphis. Dye attended college at the former Memphis State University, now recognized as the University of Memphis.
Born in Amory, Miss., Dye moved to Cleveland with his parents, Jim and Lynn Dye, in 1975. The family lived in Cleveland until 1978 when they returned to Mississippi, according to an article previously published in the Cleveland Daily Banner. After moving to Mississippi, the couple returned to Cleveland in 1986, and have since moved away again.
While in Cleveland in the 1970s, Dye became involved in the Ocoee Players Children Theater. Connie Gatlin, owner of Cleveland City Ballet and Bang-A-Rang productions, met him while helping out with the theater.
“He was a bright, outstanding man as a boy,” Gatlin said. “He was gifted in so many ways.”
Dye went on to study theater at Memphis State.
In the 1990s, Gatlin was a part of a group working to re-establish the Ocoee Players and make them a part of the programming of the Museum Center at Five Points.
Gatlin said planners contacted John Dye, and his brother Jerre, the latter of whom graduated from Cleveland High School, to secure their support in re-forming the live production group. Gatlin said they provided the needed support. John later attended the re-establishment celebration of the community theater group.
“He was very supportive of this community endeavor,” Gatlin said.
The 2001 Chair-ries Jubilee at the Museum Center featured a chair donated by Dye, according to past articles published in the Banner. Dye was also involved in other charitable organizations throughout his life, including his college days.
“He was very giving,” said Jim Dye who spoke in an interview with WCBI News, a TV station serving the north Mississippi and northwest Alabama region. “He had a lot of causes that he supported real well ... Make-A-Wish Foundation, AIDS research.”
Dye’s film career included several movies from 1984 to 2009. A few of the films in which he starred or co-starred were “Making the Grade,” “Modern Girls,” “Campus Man,” “Mother, Mother,” “Best of the Best,” “The Perfect Weapon,” “Sioux City,” “Heart of the Beholder,” “Claudette” and “First of the Warrior.”
His TV career, which stretched from 1987 to 2003, included starring and guest starring roles in various series and in movies. Some were “Billionaire Boys Club,” “CBS Summer Playhouse,” “Murder, She Wrote,” “Tour of Duty,” “Room for Romance,” “Jack’s Place,” “Hotel Malibu,” “The Nerd,” “Promised Land,” “Once Upon a Christmas,” and “Twice Upon a Christmas.”
The Amory native graduated from Tupelo High School in north Mississippi.
E.E. Pickle Funeral Home of Amory has charge of arrangements. Announcements are pending.