Horror Actor Passes: Tom Towles Dies At 65

Some may not recognize the name Tom Towles, but horror fans with definitely know his face. Tom has made his acting career by playing hard-to-forget and creepy characters. His death was announced on Sunday; Towles was 65 years-old.

Rob Zombie, who often employed Tom in his movies, posted about the death on Sunday via Facebook.

“I just got word that our buddy Tom Towles has died. He was such a great guy and I am so grateful that we got to work together several times. He will be really missed.”

E! Online reports that the cause of death was a massive stroke. Towles has been sent to Florida Hospital in Pinellas country, Florida on March 29. On Thursday, the actor passed away peacefully leaving behind his sister, Kai Towles and niece, Laine Taylor.

Chicago-born Tom Towles hit the big time in 1986 in Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. Tom’s character was loosely based on the story of Otis Toole, who was convicted of the murder of Adam Walsh, John Walsh’s son. John Walsh would later become the host of America’s Most Wanted. Towles portrayal of Otis was creepy indeed.

Tom Towles also had roles in the remake of The Pit and the Pendulum (1991), Homesick (2007), and the re-imagining of Halloween (2007). He often joined the cast of Rob Zombie movies. He played parts in House of 1000 Corpses (2003), The Devil’s Rejects (2005), and Grindhouse (2007).

Movies were not Tom’s only arena for his acting skills. Towles’ also found his way into television, playing roles in Seinfield, ER, and L. A. Law. Sci-fi enthusiasts might recognize him from both Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager. He also was in the short-lived Firefly.

Towles’ career in film really began in the mid-1980s, though he did have a small part in Dog Day Afternoon in 1975. According to the International Movie Data Base, he has more than 60 credits to his name. His last role listed was in Blood on the Highway (2008).

Tom Towles will be remembered for his prolific film career. His death leaves a hole in the horror film community that cannot be refilled. Whether playing scary, terrifying, or just plain creepy, Towles was able to elicit carnal cringes from his audience.

What is Tom Towles most memorable role? What will you always remember him as?

[Photo via CNN]