Charlton Heston dies

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Screen legend Charlton Heston dies

Charlton Heston has died.

The Hollywood legend passed away at his Beverly Hills home on Saturday night (05.04.08) aged 84.

According to a statement released by his family, Heston's wife Lydia - who was married to the actor for 64 years - was by his side until his final moments.

No other details, including the cause of death, are yet to be revealed.

The statement read: "Charlton Heston was seen by the world as larger than life... We knew him as an adoring husband, a kind and devoted father, and a gentle grandfather, with an infectious sense of humour. He served these far greater roles with tremendous faith, courage and dignity. He loved deeply, and he was deeply loved.

"No one could ask for a fuller life than his. No man could have given more to his family, to his profession, and to his country. In his own words, 'I have lived such a wonderful life! I've lived enough for two people.'"

In 2002, Heston revealed in a videotaped message he had been diagnosed with symptoms consistent to the onset of Alzheimer's disease. He was seen little in public in the last few years.

He had a distinguished acting career and became famous for his portrayals of epic heroes and Biblical characters in the 50s and 60s.

His most acclaimed performances include playing Moses in the 1956 remake of 'The Ten Commandments', the title role in 1959's 'Ben-Hur' - for which he won the Best Actor Oscar - and as an astronaut who returns to a post-apocalypse Earth ruled by talking Gorillas, Chimpanzees and Orang-utans in 'Planet of the Apes', released in 1968.

The family's statement added: "He was known for his chiselled jaw, broad shoulders and resonating voice, and, of course, for the roles he played. Indeed, he committed himself to every role with passion, and pursued every cause with unmatched enthusiasm and integrity.”

Later in his life Heston became well-known for his Right wing political beliefs and caused much controversy in his role as president of America's National Rifle Association.

He fiercely campaigned on the right for US citizens to bear arms, but resigned from the position in 2003.

He is survived by his wife Lydia, their two children, son Fraser and daughter Holly Ann, and three grandchildren, Jack Alexander Heston, Ridley Rochell and Charlie Rochell.

© BANG Media International

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