'West Wing' Actor John Spencer Dies at 58
'Like Leo, I've always been a workaholic, too,' he told The Associated Press in a 2000 interview. 'Through good times and bad, acting has been my escape, my joy, my nourishment. The drug for me, even better than alcohol, was acting.'
Spencer died of a heart attack Friday. In a sad parallel to life, his character on the show had earlier suffered a heart attack that forced him to give up his White House job.
Spencer died after being admitted to a Los Angeles hospital during the night, said his publicist, Ron Hofmann. He would have been 59 on Tuesday.
He was 'one of those rare combinations of divinely gifted and incredibly generous,' said Richard Schiff, who plays Toby Ziegler on the NBC series.
'There are very few personal treasures that you put in your knapsack to carry with you for the rest of your life, and he's one of those,' Schiff said. He said Spencer had been struggling with health issues but seemed to have rebounded."