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Peter Fonda dies at 79: Legendary counterculture figure & "Easy Rider" star

Mike Cherico

Peter Fonda, a member of one of Hollywood 's royal families, has died at age 79.

The details of the cause of death have yet to be released, however, Peter had been challenged with health issues in his final days, with frequent visits to the hospital for reasons not made public according to TMZ.

Son of Oscar-winning actor Henry Fonda, brother to Oscar-winner Jane Fonda and father to actress Bridget Fonda, Peter was best known for his role in the classic 1969 film “Easy Rider.” He starred in the film alongside icons Jack Nicholson and Dennis Hopper. Peter earned an Academy Award nomination for his co-writing of the film which he also helped produce.

"Easy Rider" was the third highest-grossing film of 1969 and was made on a budget of only $400,000.00 but earned over $60 Million worldwide according to TheNumbers.com.

Peter, born in New York on February 23, 1940, was a key figure of the counterculture that dominated the rebellious American landscape of the 1960s.

Jane Fonda shared thoughts about her brother with The Hollywood Reporter, "I am very sad. He was my sweet-hearted baby brother. The talker of the family. I have had beautiful alone time with him these last days. He went out laughing."

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His second Oscar nomination came for his role as Ulee Jackson in the 1997 film, “Ulee’s Gold,” about a beekeeper.

Peter was married three times. In addition to his daughter Bridget he leaves behind a son Justin.  He was married to Margaret DeVogelaere at the time of his death.

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