Bob Penny, ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ and ‘Mississippi Burning’ actor, dies at 87

By Zach Seemayer‍,

Bob Penny — an Alabama college professor turned actor with a nearly 30-year career in Hollywood — died on Christmas Day in Huntsville, Alabama. He was 87 years old.

Penny spent three decades as an English teacher, teaching poetry and prose at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. During his teaching career, Penny was an award-winning educator and an acclaimed poet in his own right.

He retired from academia in 1990, after 32 years in the classroom, and turned to his passion for performing. Penny began working in small roles in some beloved classics.

Throughout her Hollywood career, Penny has appeared in over 30 films and television shows. His movie credits include « Sweet Home Alabama », « Forrest Gump », « Mississippi Burning », « My Cousin Vinny », and « The Legend of Bagger Vance », among others.

As for TV projects, Penny has appeared in shows such as « Higher Education », « Drop Dead Diva », « Devious Maids », and the TV adaptation of « In the Heat of the Night ». His most recent credit was a recurring role on the series « Still the King » in 2016.

Penny is survived by her brother, sister, six nieces and one nephew.


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