Al Strobel, the One-Armed Man in ‘Twin Peaks’, Dies at 83

Veteran actor Al Strobel, best known for playing Phillip Gerard (aka the One-Armed Man) in the original Twin Peaks, its 1992 movie spinoff, and its 2017 revival, has died. He was 83.

Strobel’s passing was confirmed by Sabrina Sutherland, the producer who worked alongside Twin Peaks co-creator David Lynch on the 2017 Showtime revival. “I am sad to have to post that Al Strobel passed away last night [December 2]. I loved him dearly,” Sutherland wrote on Facebook. A cause of death has not yet been revealed.

Born in Seattle, Washington, in 1939, Strobel lost his left arm in a car accident when he was 17 years old. In Twin Peaks, it was revealed his character Gerard cut off his own arm, which was branded with a “Fire Walk With Me” tattoo, to rid him of the evil spirit, Mike.

In addition to his work on Twin Peaks, Strobel also appeared in the 1990 film Megaville alongside fellow Twin Peaks cast member Billy Zane and the 2001 feature Ricochet River, once again playing a character referred to as the One-Armed Man. He also starred in the 1991 television movie Child of Darkness, Child of Light.

Following the news of Strobel’s passing, several Twin Peaks alum paid tribute to their former co-star. “Sad, sad news…love Al. He was the sweetest of men,” wrote Dana Ashbrook, who played leather jacket-wearing jock turned local cop Bobby Briggs.

Kyle MacLachlan, who played series lead Special Agent Dale Cooper, shared his tribute in an Instagram comment, writing, “One of the nicest guys ever. I’m so sorry to hear this news. He brought a gravitas and an intensity to the world of Twin Peaks that was essential. Sending love.”

Mark Frost, the series’ co-creator, added, “Oh no…Dear Al…as those of you lucky enough to have met him over the years, what a warm and wonderful gentleman he was. RIP, friend.”

“Al Strobel was always a joy to be around. I’ll never forget his delight in telling us his very own vehicle—his Chinook camper—was used in Fire Walk With Me. Farewell Al,” wrote John Thorne, creator of the Twin Peaks fan magazine Wrapped In Plastic.

Twin Peaks producer Harley Peyton also shared his condolences, stating, “As authentic an actor as I ever met. So precise so real. RIP. Al.”

Twin Peaks, Streaming, Showtime

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