Tony Burton, 'Rocky' Actor, Dies at 78

Tony Burton at Rocky Balboa Premiere - Getty - H 2016

Burton was best known for playing Apollo Creed's trainer in the 'Rocky' franchise.

Tony Burton, an actor from the Rocky franchise, died Thursday, according to Michigan news website MLive. He was 78.

Burton, a Flint, Mich., native, was best known for playing Apollo Creed's trainer Duke in the boxing films. He won Flint Golden Gloves light heavyweight titles in 1955 and again in 1957, before fighting professionally briefly. Burton went on to an acting career, which included roles in The Shining and Stir Crazy

His sister, Loretta Kelley, told MLive that he had been in and out of the hospital lately, but hadn't gotten a diagnosis. She added that because of his health, Burton was never able to see the latest Rocky film, Creed

Fellow Rocky actor Carl Weathers, who played Apollo Creed, tweeted about Burton on Thursday evening.