Peter Fonda, Star of 'Easy Rider,' Dies at 79 After Battle With Lung Cancer

10 Years Anniversary ZFF Party - Zurich Film Festival 2014

Peter Fonda, the younger brother to Jane Fonda and the son of legendary Hollywood star, Henry Fonda, has passed away at the age of 79, the family confirmed in a statement Friday afternoon. The cause of death was respiratory failure due to lung cancer.

“It is with deep sorrow that we share the news that Peter Fonda has passed away,” the family said. “[Peter] passed away peacefully on Friday morning, August 16 at 11:05 a.m. at his home in Los Angeles surrounded by family.”

“The official cause of death was respiratory failure due to lung cancer,” the statement read. "In one of the saddest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our hearts. As we grieve, we ask that you respect our privacy. And, while we mourn the loss of this sweet and gracious man, we also wish for all to celebrate his indomitable spirit and love of life. In honor of Peter, please raise a glass to freedom.”

Fonda made his debut on the silver screen with "Tammy and the Doctor," but he was best known for his role in the 1969 counterculture movie, "Easy Rider," which he helped write and produce. That movie earned Fonda his first of two Academy Award nominations for the film's screenplay alongside Dennis Hopper, who also directed the movie, and Terry Southern. He second nomination came in 1997 for lead actor for his work in the independent film, "Ulee's Gold."

The last film Fonda appeared in was called "The Last Full Measure," which is scheduled for release later this year.

Photo: Getty Images

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