(CNN) — Actor James Avery, who played the beloved Uncle Phil on the hit 1990s sitcom \”The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,\” died Tuesday, his publicist confirmed. He was 67.
The cause of death was complications from open-heart surgery, said his manager, Toni Benson.
His \”Fresh Prince\” co-star Alfonso Ribeiro tweeted news of Avery\’s passing.
James Avery is best known for \”The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.\”
\”I\’m deeply saddened to say that James Avery has passed away,\” Riberio tweeted. \”He was a second father to me. I will miss him greatly.
A classically trained actor and poet, Avery grew up in Atlantic City, New Jersey, where he was raised by a single mother. He served in the Navy during the Vietnam War and first appeared onscreen as a dancer in an uncredited role in the 1980 film \”The Blues Brothers.\”