19 December 2005

RIP John Spencer, aka Leo McGarry

Hey guys, it's Donnie...Friday night I was out drinking with a group of friends when someone announced that John Spencer had died of a heart attack. The news pretty much silenced the table. Suffice it to say that we spent the remainder of the evening drinking to his memory.

John Spencer was an absolutely amazing actor, best known for his Emmy winning portrayal of Leo McGarry on The West Wing, one of the greatest television shows conceived by man. McGarry was President Bartlett's Cheif of Staff for much of the show, until (ironically enough) his character, a recovering alcoholic, suffered a massive heart attack that forced him to leave the White House. McGarry later returned as the Vice Presidential candidate and runningmate to Jimmy Smits's character Matthew Santos. No word yet on how Spencer's death will affect the show, now in its' final season.

Spencer had a number of very memorable roles over the years, most notably in The Rock, The Negotiator, Cop Land, Sea of Love, Presumed Innocent, and the television series LA Law and The Patty Duke Show (when he was a child). Personally, I'll always remember him as the missile silo commander (along with a very young Michael Madsen) who refuses to turn his key at the beginning of Wargames.

John Spencer was 58.

He went WELL before his time.


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