PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Jared Martin, who became a fan favorite with his portrayal of the charming cowboy Dusty Farlow on the 1980s soap opera “Dallas,” has died. He was 75.
Martin died Wednesday at his Philadelphia home after battling pancreatic cancer for over a year, said his wife, Yu Wei.
On “Dallas,” Martin played a rancher who was the lover of Sue Ellen, played by actress Linda Gray.
“Rest In Peace dear Jared Martin,” Gray tweeted Friday. “I have such beautiful memories of working with you as Dusty Farlow on Dallas.”
His character was also a suspect in the 1980 series cliffhanger that left the world wondering who shot ornery oilman J.R. Ewing. The catchphrase “Who shot J.R.?” became part of the common vernacular as viewers waited to find out who had fired on him.
When viewers tuned in for the answer on Nov. 21, 1980, the shooter was revealed to be J.R.’s vengeful mistress and sister-in-law, Kristen Shepard. That episode was seen by more people than any program in TV history until that time.
Farlow was supposed to be a temporary character on the show, and supposedly died in a plane crash, but he proved so popular that he was reintroduced. Fans called him “Lusty Dusty.”
Martin was the son of New Yorker cartoonist Charles E. Martin. He roomed with film director Brian De Palma when the two attended Columbia University in the 1960s.
In addition to “Dallas” he appeared in a number of popular TV shows including the 1973 version of “Westworld,” plus episodes of “The Love Boat,” ”Magnum P.I.,” ”War of the Worlds” and “Murder She Wrote.” Most recently, he directed a 2013 movie called “The Congressman” starring Treat Williams.
After retiring from acting, he founded a nonprofit that introduces inner city children to filmmaking.
“He had a great life,” his wife said. “He had more to do, but cancer took him.”
She said he was working on a book about his struggles with cancer at the time of his death.
He survived by a son, Christian Martin, and two grandchildren.