Monday, March 15, 2010

In Memorium - Peter Graves

Peter Graves, best known for his roles in the 1960s series Mission Impossible as well as the movie Airplane, died of a heart attack at his home in Pacific Palisades, Calififornia today.

Although he played it cool in Mission: Impossible, it was that unerring smooth nature that he made fun of in movies like Airplane! and even in a Geico car commercial.

Peter was born Peter Aurness in Minneapolis, and served in the Army Air Forces from 1944-45 before studying drama at the University of Minnesota. He then followed his older brother to Hollywood. His first movie was Rogue River in 1950.

He then changed his last name so he wouldn’t be confused with his brother, and transitioned into to films like Stalag 17, Night of the Hunter, Court-Martial of Billy Mitchell and Long Gray Line, among others. He also starred in TV show Fury from 1955-59.

One of his most memorable roles as Jim Phelps on the Mission: Impossible series on TV lasted from 1967-73, and then again from 1988-90.
He is survived by his wife, Joan Graves, and three daughters, Amanda Lee Graves, Claudia King Graves and Kelly Jean Graves. Peter will be dearly missed.

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