Emmy-Winning Actor Ron Cephas Jones Dead at 66
Ron Cephas Jones, award-winning actor known for his television role in This Is Us as well as his stage work has died. He was 66.
Via statement, a representative for Jones told People the cause of death was “a long-standing pulmonary issue.”
Jones was highly regarded, especially on the stage. He was recently nominated for a Tony Award, and won the Drama Desk Award For Outstanding Featured Actor, for his performance in Clyde’s.
Though his career started in the 1980s, Jones gained significant recognition for playing William, the biological father of Randall Pearson (Sterling K. Brown), in the popular NBC drama This Is Us. His heart-wrenching role earned him four Primetime Emmy nominations, winning two. One of the years he won was groundbreaking. In 2020, his daughter, actress Jasmine Cephas Jones, won her first Emmy, making them the first father-daughter duo to do so.
He announced his battle with pulmonary disease to the New York Times in 2021, beginning his work on Clyde’s after receiving a double lung transplant in 2020. Cephas, a dedicated performer, expressed gratitude for the surgery as it allowed him to further pursue his passion.
“My whole life has been the stage,” he said in a interview with Entertainment Weekly. “The idea of not performing again seemed worse to me than death.”
As recently as last December, Cephas Jones was revealed to be cast as Nation of Islam Leader Elijah Mohammed in Disney+ and NatGeo new series Genius:MLK/X, but whether or not he has completed filming for the show has yet to be confirmed.
“Throughout the course of his career, his warmth, beauty, generosity, kindness and heart were felt by anyone who had the good fortune of knowing him,” the statement read. Jasmine Cephas Joenes, who is also known for her work in the musical Hamilton, has yet to speak publicly of her father’s passing.