The actor, who played Mr. Wilhelm on the sitcom, died on Tuesday at his home in Los Angeles

By Robyn Merrett
May 26, 2020 04:15 PM
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Richard Herd
| Credit: Scott Kirkland/Globe Photos/ZUMAPRESS.com/Alamy

Actor Richard Herd has died. He was 87.

Herd, best known for his role as Mr. Wilhelm on Seinfeld, died Tuesday at his home in Los Angeles of complications from cancer, his wife Patricia Crowder Herd told The Hollywood Reporter. Variety also confirmed the news.

Herd appeared on Seinfeld, which followed stand-up comedian Jerry Seinfeld and his friends in New York City, for 11 episodes as George Costanza's (Jason Alexander) boss.

The series ran for nine seasons on NBC from 1989 to 1998.

"He was very vulnerable. He had an odd sense of humor," Herd said of his Seinfeld character in a 2016 interview, according to The Hollywood Reporter. "He was way out there on occasion. I've taken a few trips out there, so I know all about it."

Herd's other TV credits included his role as Admiral Owen Paris in Star Trek: Voyager as well as parts in The Rockford Files, Eight Is Enough, Starsky and Hutch, M*A*S*H, Dallas and Shameless.

He also played Klingon L'Kor on Star Trek: The Next Generation.

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Herd also appeared in a number of films including Jordan Peele's thriller Get Out as well as The Mule, The Silent Natural, and A Christmas in New York.

Born in 1932 in Boston, Herd previously suffered from a serious illness as a child, which he said helped him as an actor.

"I had osteomyelitis, a serious bone infection, and almost didn't survive," Herd told the Patriot Ledger in 2015.

"I became ill in second grade and went to the Cotting School, as it's now known, in Lexington, for young people various ailments. I was in and out of Boston Children's Hospital. Lying there, month after month, you become very stoic," he continued. "It really stimulated my imagination and I think actually helped me later as an actor."

Herd is survived by his wife, daughter Erica Herd and son Richard Herd Jr.