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Former Actor and Marlboro Man Eric Lawson Dies of Lung Disease

January 27, 2014, 7:41 am GMT

Lawson, who played rugged man in a cigarette commercial in the 1970s, passes away at his home in San Luis Obispo, Calif. following a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.



Eric Lawson, a former actor who played a rugged man in a commercial for Marlboro in the 1970s, has passed away. He was 72. According to the Associated Press, Lawson died at his home in San Luis Obispo, California on January 10. His wife Susan Lawson said that the late star died of respiratory failure. Lawson suffered from a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD prior to his death.

Lawson was an actor who appeared on shows such as "Baretta" and "The Streets of San Francisco". In addition to the two titles, he appeared on "Charlie's Angels", ''Dynasty" and "Baywatch. He starred in the cigarette commercial between 1978 and 1981. Lawson retired from acting in 1997 after sustaining injuries on filming set.

Lawson started smoking at the age of 14. Although he knew that smoking was dangerous for his health, Lawson could not stop the bad habit. "He knew the cigarettes had a hold on him. He knew, yet he still couldn't stop," his wife said. Lawson then starred in an anti-smoking ad which parodied Marlboro man. He also took part in "Entertainment Tonight" to discuss the effects of smoking to people's health.

In addition to his wife, Lawson is survived by 6 children, 18 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

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