A huge loss for Hollywood. Actor Burt Reynolds, passed away today at the age of 82.
Reynolds made his acting debut more than 50 years ago.
He’s played dozens of characters from the handsome heart-throb to the tough guy even the funny guy.
Smokey and the Bandit, Deliverance, Boogie Nights, The Cannonball Run. He was known for so many classics.
In fact, many call him the original heart-throb.
But, what a lot of people don’t know is Burt Reynolds’ connection to the Hostess City.
“He came to Savannah to do the chase scenes for the longest yard,” Pete Liakakis says.
Liakakis was the former bodyguard of Reynolds’, the start of a beautiful relationship.
“After I worked on the longest yard with him. He then said, Pete, I want you to work with me from now on. He said, Pete, I want you to know that you’re going to be with me for a long long time,” Liakakis said.
The Longest Yard and Gator were filmed in Savannah during the 70’s. While he was in the Coastal Empire, Reynolds helped a local orphanage and donated fans to senior citizens after a heat wave killed 66 people.
“He was a very good person,” Liakakis said.
Just one of his good deeds providing roles for up-and-coming actors.
“He would call up you know some actors that he knew and says there is a part in this movie and I’d like you to be in it and they were thrilled to death,” he says.
But one thing Reynolds always did is give back to his fans.
“I think it was how he treated people. Because sometimes actors don’t want to give an autograph picture or something like that,” he said.
Burt Reynolds’ wasn’t that kind of guy. He embraced his fans and made sure he and his crew had photos to autograph.
Liakakis is now left cherishing the special memories, forever in his heart.
“Burt thank you for us being friends and all because it makes a big difference in my life that you and I are friends,” he said while sobbing.
According to Reynold’s agent, the actor passed away this morning from a heart attack.
At this time no funeral arrangements have been made.