Orson Bean, 'Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman' Star, Dead at 91 After Being Hit by Car

Orson Bean, the actor behind behind many roles including Loren Bray in Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, has died after being struck by a vehicle in Los Angeles. He was 91.

The Associated Press reports that the actor was walking in the Venice area of L.A. when a car "clipped" him. Bean apparently fell to the ground due to this collision. He was then hit by a second vehicle, killing him. Both drivers remained at the scene of the incident to provide statements to police.

Police did not officially identity Bean as of press time. However, numerous local outlets confirmed his identity independently.

Bean appeared in countless projects through the years. Besides Dr. Quinn, his longest running TV gig was as Roy Bender on Desperate Housewives. He also had guest appearances on: The Twilight Zone, The King of Queens, Love Boat, Diagnosis: Murder, The Facts of Life, Will & Grace, Modern Family, Two and a Half Men, Superstore, 7th Heaven, Grace and Frankie, One Life to Live, Becker, Hot in Cleveland, and Murder, She Wrote. He was also a regular guest on both The Tonight Show and To Tell the Truth.

He also appeared in movies, including Being John Malkovich, The Equalizer 2, Innerspace, Soccer Dog: European Cup, Instant Karma and Anatomy of a Murder.

He also had several notable voiceover roles. Aside from guest appearances on kids shows Tiny Toon Adventures and Garfield in the Rough, he voiced Bilbo Baggins in 1977's The Hobbit and both Bilbo and Frodo Baggins in 1980's The Return of the King. Both specials were based on J. R. R. Tolkien's books of the same name and were produced by Rankin/Bass Productions.

Outside of acting, he help found the 15th Street School in New York City, as well as the Sons of the Desert, the fraternal organization dedicated to appreciating the works of Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy. He also helped fund the Pacific Resident Theater Ensemble in Venice in recent years.


Bean is survived by wife Alley Mills and three children: Michele, Max and Ezekiel. Michele's mother is Bean's first wife, Jacqueline de Sibour. Max and Ezekiel's mother is Bean's second wife, Carolyn Maxwell.

Photo Credit: Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images