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Raymond St. Jacques
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    (March 1, 1930-August 27, 1990)
    Born in Hartford, Connecticut
    Birth name was James Arthur Johnson
    Portrayed Simon Blake on ‘Rawhide’ (1965-66)
    Appeared in the films ‘Black Like Me’ (1964), ‘The Pawnbroker’ (1965), ‘The Comedians’ (1967), ‘Change of Mind’ (1969), ‘Cotton Comes to Harlem’ (1970), ‘Come Back, Charleston Blue’ (1972), ‘The Book of Numbers’ (1973), ‘The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover’ (1977), ‘The Evil That Men Do’ (1984), ‘They Live’ (1988), ‘Glory’ (1989) and ‘Timebomb’ (1991)
    Directed and produced ‘The Book of Numbers’ (1973)
    Appeared in the miniseries ‘Roots’ (1977)
    Died of AIDS-related lymphoma at age 60
    He described several of his early acting jobs as being the ‘token nigger’ in the cast.
    He presented model Sterling St. Jacques as either his nephew or his adopted son, when they were actually lovers.
    He complained about blaxploitation films (‘Why does it have to be pimps and pushers on the screen all the time?’) despite appearing in several.
    He served in the Air Force during the Korean War.
    In addition to acting with the American Shakespeare Festival, he served as their fencing instructor.
    He taught both acting and fencing at the Mafundi Institute in Watts.
    He was fluent in French and Italian.
    He was the first black actor with a regular role in a Western TV series.
    He won the first NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture for ‘Change of Mind.’
    He was arrested during an anti-apartheid demonstration outside the South African embassy in Washington, DC (1985).

Credit: C. Fishel

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