For eight years, fans of Sesame Street were able to witness the magic of famed actor David Langston Smyrl in his lovable role as Mr. Handford. As owner of the fictional Hooper’s Store on the longstanding children’s program, Smyrl was a pivotal fixture on Sesame Street from 1990 to 1998.
Sadly, on Tuesday (Mar. 22), Smyrl passed away from a battle with lung cancer at the age of 80, The Hollywood Reporter published. In a statement, his wife Cheryl Smyrl said, “I could say so many good things about him. He was loved by so many people. He was a mentor to a lot of children. He was a family man, loyal, true and faithful.”
Smyrl’s filmography also includes recurring appearances in the Express Yourself television show, a writer/actor on The Cosby Show, Benson, and later his role on Sesame Street.
Here are a couple of the Philadelphia native’s touching moments on Sesame Street.