Charles Starrett Dies at 82; Actor on Stage and Screen

Published: March 26, 1986

Charles Starrett, an actor who played the Durango Kid in a series of westerns in the 1930’s and 40’s, died Saturday in Borrego Springs, Calif. He was 82 years old.

Mr. Starrett was born in Athol, Mass. and was heir to a tool and die company. While attending Dartmouth College in 1926, he appeared in his first motion picture, working as an extra in the Richard Dix film ”The Quarterback.” After college he joined Stewart Walker’s stock company and worked in regional theater for three years in Cincinnati and Indianapolis.

He then moved to New York where he appeared on Broadway in ”Star of Bengal” and ”Claire Adams,” among other plays. His films included ”The Royal Family of Broadway,” ”Frontier Outpost,” ”Eldorado Pass,” ”Buckaroo From Powder River,” ”Jungle Bride,” ”The Mask of Fu Manchu,” ”Challenge of the Range” and ”The Betters.” Mr. Starrett retired from acting in 1952.

He is survived by his wife, Mary, and two sons.

Here is my addition:


A Cowboy’s life is your work and play

Thru rain or shine or come what may

You can take it on the chin

You can take it with a grin

That is why I say

You’re a credit to your calling, Western Son

No matter what’s befalling, you’re the one

Whose grin is always ready

Whose aim is always steady

You’re a credit to your calling, Western Son

Always happy with your pals

Always handy with the gal

Just a true-hearted buckaroo

When your race is run and all is done

You’re a credit to your calling, Western Son

— Texas Jim Lewis and His Lone Star Cowboys, from “Pardon My Gun” 1942

RIP Steve.