James LaRue Avery was born on November 27, 1945, in Pughsville, Hampton Roads, Virginia, and died on December 31, 2013.
He was an American actor.
James played patriarch Philip Banks in the sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990−96).
His character was rated #34 in TV Guide ‘ s “50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time.”
Avery also provided the voice of Shredder in the 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles television series, as well as War Machine in the animated series Iron Man (1994−95) and Junkyard Dog in Hulk Hogan’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling (1985).
James Avery also played Michael Kelso’s commanding officer at the police academy late in the series run of That ’70s Show (2004).
Avery was raised in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
James served in the Vietnam War as a member of the U.S. Navy from 1968–1969, after graduating high school.
Following that, he moved to San Diego, California, where he began to write poetry and TV scripts.
In extension to his fame in sitcoms, James did voice acting for many animated series, most notably the 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series (as the voice of Shredder) and James Rhodes/War Machine in the 1990s Iron Man series.
Mr.Avery was the commencement speaker for his alma mater, UC San Diego’s Thurgood Marshall College in 2007 and again in 2012.
James Avery married Barbara in 1988.
James had no children of his own, but was a stepfather to his wife’s son, Kevin Waters.
James Avery passed away at 68 yrs old.