'Dust in the Wind'?"Old School's" Patrick Cranshaw Passes Away

Patrick Cranshaw, the actor best known as Will Ferrell's elderly frat buddy Joseph "Blue" Palansky in 2003's "Old School," has passed away at the age of 86.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the white-haired character actor succumbed to natural causes on December 28 at his home in Fort Worth.

Cranshaw was born in Oklahoma in 1919 and entertained American troops before World War II, although his first screen credit would come much later in an uncredited role in 1955's "Texas Lady." Cranshaw worked steadily throughout the decades with bit parts in films like "Bonnie and Clyde," "Pee Wee's Big Adventure," "The Hudsucker Proxy," "Best in Show," and "Bubble Boy;" he was also a prolific television actor with over 50 appearances on shows like "Green Acres," "The Dukes of Hazzard," "The Drew Carey Show" and "ER."

Yet despite his 100+ combined film and television appearances, Cranshaw became best known as Blue, the geriatric frat pledge who dies from excitement as he's about to wrestle two young coeds, in the middle-aged fraternity comedy "Old School." His character is unforgettably eulogized with Will Ferrell?s rendition of Kansas' 80?s ballad "Dust in the Wind," and the line, "You're my boy, Blue!" According to his personal manager, Jeff Ross, it was a cult status that Cranshaw embraced by answering to the name "Blue" in public.

Cranshaw had just finished filming "Air Buddies," the sixth movie in the "Air Bud" series, reprising his role as Sheriff Bob. He also appeared in the last two sequels, "Air Bud: Seventh Inning Stretch," and "Air Bud: Spikes Back." "Air Buddies" is set for release in 2006.

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