Bob Penny, who starred in movies including Forrest Gump and Sweet Home Alabama, passed away at the age of 87. The obituary for the Huntsville, Alabama, resident who passed away on Sunday, Christmas Day, does not mention a cause of death.
The actor, poet and teacher is survived by his sister Jean Marion You, brother William Earl Penny, six nieces, and one nephew.
The family stated that a celebration of life will be held in Birmingham at a later time in the obituary that was placed on the website of the Laughlin Family Funeral home. Penny, identified on IMDB as “Crony” in the 1994 Oscar-winning film Forrest Gump, worked on over 40 movies and TV shows. He plays small-town attorney Wallace Buford in the 2002 Reese Witherspoon film Sweet Home Alabama.
Bob Penny was born and raised in North Carolina, and after moving away. He returned to teach poetry and prose for 21 years at the University of Alabama in Birmingham.
Penny turned down the university’s invitation to hire him as a full-time professor of theatre and English in 1990 and instead chose to leave the classroom. After that, he was able to devote more time to acting and continued to appear in movies and television shows for an additional 26 years, including as a juror in the Joe Pesci and Marisa Tomei comedy My Cousin Vinny.
The family concluded the memorial service by expressing their sincere gratitude to Lakin Boyd. Penny’s lifelong companion and carer, as well as to the employees of Thrive Assisted Living in Huntsville.
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Bob’s niece, Meghan Penny, posted a picture of her uncle on Facebook.
“It’s taken me a few days of introspection before I was ready to share this information. On Christmas Day, Uncle Bob (Dad’s brother) passed away gently while sleeping “Meghan typed.
“Bob was more to me than just an Uncle. We have a unique connection that has sustained and greatly expanded my life. He served as my confidant, my mentor, and my greatest friend. I feel a huge sense of relief that he is finally free “She continued by lamenting her loss.
“Sleep well, beautiful prince. And angelic flights will serenade you to sleep “Added she.