"One of my most vivid memories as a 16-year-old was skipping school and climbing over a fence, finding someone with a radio and talking myself onto the set of Smokey and the Bandit at the fairgrounds in Atlanta," Schneider shares in a statement. "Years later after Dukes of Hazard started, I had a friendship with Burt Reynolds and I cherished it. Years after that, I would go to Burt's house for his birthday party or different functions and sing with Dom Deluise and other friends, and after that I would go to Burt's house with my son Chasen and watch football. Burt was the only person who could get me to watch football.
"I'll miss my friends," he continues. "I will miss his laugh, I will miss the future marks he was gonna make on this world. But I know that he was in pain. I know that his body had given out after years of sports and stunts and doing crazy things that he loved so much. So, I'm delighted that my friend is no longer in pain and he's hanging out with some of the greatest sports figures and actors and comedians and singers and wonderful people in the world cause anyone who ever met Burt met a friend.
"So, here's to you buddy," he concludes. "Say hi to Jimmy Best and Dom Deluise and Hal Needham and Jim Nabors and all those wonderful people up there who were lucky enough to call you friends down here."
Schneider had a small, uncredited role in Smokey and the Bandit, as a cowboy in a crowd scene, according to IMDb.
Dolly Parton appeared alongside Reynolds in the 1982 hit, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, where the two actors formed a long friendship.
"Oh how sad I am today along with Burt's millions of fans around the world as we mourn one of our favorite leading men," she said. "I know we will always remember his funny laugh, that mischievous sparkle in his eyes, and his quirky sense of humor. You will always be my favorite sheriff, rest in peace my little buddy and I will always love you, Dolly."
Reba McEntire also mourned her former co-star, recalling the made-for-TV movie, The Man From Left Field, which they both starred in in 1993.
"My good friend has started a new journey," she said. "Rest in my peace my friend. I'll never forget the wonderful times we spent together."
Reynolds reportedly passed away from a heart attack. Funeral details are pending at this time.
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