Tommy “Tiny” Lister, the towering actor best known for playing fearsome neighborhood bully Deebo in the “Friday” film franchise, has died. He was 62.

Lister was reportedly found dead Thursday at his apartment in Marina Del Ray, Calif., after friends’ attempts to contact him failed and a wellness check was issued.

The cause of death was not immediately known Friday morning. However, Lister’s manager said was diagnosed with COVID-19 earlier this year, The Associated Press reported.

Though Lister recovered from the coronavirus, he fell ill about a week ago and eventually began having trouble breathing, the manager told AP.

The hulking, 6’5″ Lister, blind in his right eye from birth, played roles in several other films, notably as Zeus in 1989’s “No Hold Barred” opposite Hulk Hogan and in Mario Van Peebles’ 1993 western “Posse.”

But it was the Compton, Calif., native’s turn as the menacing Deebo in the 1995 cult classic “Friday” where Lister truly made his mark. He reprised the role in the sequel “Next Friday” five years later.

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WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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