Gary Klar–the actor known by horror fans for his role as Pvt. Walter Steel in George A. Romero’s classic 1985 Day of the Dead–passed away Dec. 31, 2020. Klar was 73 years old.
The news of Klar’s passing was announced on the Facebook page of The George A. Romero Foundation. The posting read: “It is with great sadness that we here at The George A. Romero Foundarion mark the passing of Gary Klar. Gary needs no introduction to horror fans–having so iconically played Private Steel in Day of the Dead, bringing his unique acting abilities to the role, making George A. Romero’s dialogue so quotable.”
The post continued: “We hope the love from the Romero family of fans and friends will give strength to the Klar family at this painful time. We are keeping you all in our thoughts and hearts.”
Klar–who was an Olympic weightlifter in his youth and played both collegiate and pro football until an injury curtailed his sports career–landed his first acting role in 1980’s Hero at Large. His Pvt. Steel in Day of the Dead–the third film in Romero’s Dead trilogy–was a key player, along with Capt. Henry Rhodes, in the battle against the movie’s zombie hordes.
Klar continued his acting career with roles in such films as Legal Eagles (1986), Big (1988), Quick Change (1990) and Hackers (1995).
A Connecticut native, Klar was a special guest in 2014 at the very first CT HorrorFest–an annual event organized by Horror News Network–and the staff of Horror News Network extends its condolences to his family, friends and colleagues.