Miracle Actor Michael Mantenuto Found Dead of Apparent Suicide at Age 35
The actor was found dead in his car on Monday afternoon
Actor Michael Mantenuto, best known for his role as Jack O’Callahan in Disney’s Miracle, has died. He was 35.
The actor was found on Monday afternoon after sustaining a self-inflicted gunshot wound, the King County medical examiner’s office in Seattle, Washington, tells PEOPLE. His death has officially been ruled a suicide.
Mantenuto starred alongside Kurt Russell in the Disney sports film about the 1980 U.S. hockey team’s victory over the Soviet Union team.
He went on to land a role in the 2006 TV movie Dirtbags and a small role in the 2008 comedy Surfer, Dude. Mantenuto eventually quit acting to enlist in the army.
A Holliston, Massachusetts, native, Mantenuto was a Division I hockey player at the University of Maine before landing the role in Miracle, according to an interview with the Boston Globe in 2004.
“With this movie, I was able to combine the different parts of my life that were important to me,” Mantenuto told the newspaper at the time, adding, “To be able to combine the acting, all the expression, the hockey, and be able to segue from one career that I loved so much to another where I wanted my life to go… It was pretty special.”
Army First Special Forces unit commander Col. Guillaume Beaurpere said in a statement of Mantenuto, “Those of you that knew Mike will remember him for his passionate love for his family and his commitment to the health of the force.”
Mantenuto is survived by his mother Kelly, father, three sisters, wife Kati, and two children: daughter Ava and son Leo, according to Deadline.