Dead or Alive: George Gaynes

Although George Gaynes was alive at the time of this original posting 6 years ago, sadly, he passed away at his home in North Bend, Washington on February 15, 2016. He was 98.


6392-15044 George Gaines, best known for playing the eccentric Commandant Eric Lassard in the Police Academy series and Henry Warnimont on Punky Brewster is…ALIVE.

George Gaynes was born in in Helsinki, Finland on May 16, 1917. He played Commandant Eric Lassard, who was in charge of the police academy. He travelled by golfcart, and tended to destroy things while golfing in his office.

He also played John Van Horn in the movie Tootsie, in which he was a horny old soap star, who tried to put the moves on “Dorothy Michaels,” not knowing that Dorothy was really a man.

He was more well known to television viewers for playing the lovable curmudgeon Henry Warnimont, who took in Punky Brewster.

I never watched General Hospital, but Gaines played a mob boss called Frank Smith, who was brought down by Luke Spencer. Maybe fans of that soap could give us more information.

George Gaines has been married to actress and dancer Allyn Ann McLerie since December 20, 1953, and they have two children – Matthew and Iya. George and Allyn live in Calabasas, California.

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