Rance Howard, Actor and Father of Ron and Clint Howard, Dies at 89

Rance Howard - Getty - P 2017
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He appeared in several of his older son's films, including 'Apollo 13,' 'Parenthood,' 'Splash,' 'How the Grinch Stole Christmas' and 'A Beautiful Mind.'

Rance Howard, actor and father of actor-director Ron Howard and actor Clint Howard, died Saturday. He was 89.

Ron announced the news via his Twitter account. “Clint & I have been blessed to be Rance Howard’s sons,” he wrote. “Today he passed at 89. He stood especially tall [for] his ability to balance ambition [with] great personal integrity. A Depression-era farm boy, his passion for acting changed the course of our family history. We love & miss U Dad.”

Howard appeared in several of his older son Ron's films, including Apollo 13, Parenthood, Splash, How the Grinch Stole Christmas and A Beautiful Mind,. He also appeared in Alexander Payne's Nebraska, and has several movies yet to be released, including The Christ Slayer and Apple Seed.

Howard also appeared on the small screen on shows such as Bones, Grey's Anatomy, NCIS: Los Angeles, Seinfeld, and of course, Happy Days, on which starred Ron starred.

Ron recently spoke to The Hollywood Reporter about his father. At the Nov. 14 premiere of Howard's Broken Memories, Ron said he was proud of his dad, calling his performance “the role of his career to date” and sharing what inspired him most about his father.

“He has an undying love of the process, which has made him appreciate every day on a film or television set," said Ron. "And he’s never lost the youthful excitement for being a part of a process that tells a story that reaches audiences in different ways and reflects the work of a team of collaborators that shares that excitement, and that always rubbed off on me, that joy of being lucky enough to be among the storytellers.”

At the premiere, Ron's daughter, actress Bryce Dallas Howard, also had nothing but praise for her grandfather, calling him the "greatest human being on the planet."

Howard's wife, Judy, died in January. He is survived by his sons, Bryce and another granddaughter, Paige.