Actor Rance Howard died on Saturday at the age of 89. His famous sons, Ron Howard and actor Clint Howard announced their father’s death. An official statement from Ron was released on Twitter,”Clint and I have been blessed to be the sons of Rance Howard. Today he passed at 89, he stood especially tall for his ability to balance grace with great personal integrity. A depression era farm boy, his passion for acting changed the course of our family. We love and miss you dad!”
Rance Howard was born, Harold Rance Beckenholdt in Duncan, Oklahoma. He legally changed his name to Rance Howard when he became an actor at the age of 20. His first role was in the film ‘Mister Rodgers’ with Henry Fonda in 1955. He went on to have strong character roles in dozens of other films, including ‘Cool Hand Luke’,’Psycho’,’A League of Their Own.’ and many other films. Ron Howard also cast him in several of his films. Some of those films were, Apollo 13, Beautiful Mind, and Cinderella Man. He married actress Jean Speegle in 1949 and remained married to her for 51 years, until her death in 2000.
She was the mother of both Clint and Ron Howard. Rance is also the grandfather of actresses Bryce Dallas and Paige Howard. Rance married writer Judy Jacobson in 2002 until her death in January of 2017. His granddaughter Bryce praised him earlier this year at her ‘Broken Promises’ movie career. She said he had an outstanding movie career for 65 years, which was very unique because he never broke out of the ‘character actor mold.’ She said he’s a fine example of ‘stick to it no matter what’ and see how it all comes out in the end. Ron has credited his father with keeping him ‘grounded and sane’ as a child actor.