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Actor Who Once Played Marlboro Man Dies From Lung Disease

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Eric Lawson, who played the Marlboro Man in print ads from 1978-1981, died January 10 from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease – or lung disease — a smoking-related condition. He was 72.

Lawson was an actor who scored roles in TV shows such as ‘The Streets of San Francisco,’ ‘Charlie’s Angels,’ ‘Dynasty’ and ‘Baywatch.’

Lawson’s wife said he smoked for much of his life and eventually quit once he learned he had COPD:

He knew the cigarettes had a hold on him. He knew, yet he still couldn’t stop.”

Lawson joins a growing list of men who portrayed the Marlboro Man to die from a disease caused by smoking. David Millar passed away from emphysema in 1987 and David McLean died of lung cancer in 1995.

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