Remember Actor Paul Winfield? He was with His Partner for 30 Years before His Death in 2004

The deceased actor Paul Winfield is now revealed as having lived with his life-partner for over 30 years.

Fans will be saddened to know that the beloved African American actor Paul Winfield was forced to keep his sexuality under wraps throughout his career.

The actor, who passed away in 2004 at the age of 64 of a heart attack, lived secretly for 30 years with his same-sex partner,  architect Charles Gillan Jr.

STRUGGLING WITH HIS SEXUAL IDENTITY IN A REPRESSIVE ERA

Winfield was at the height of his career In 1973 when he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor for the 1972 film "Sounder."

At that time, he was romantically involved and living with his co-star, Cicely Tyson. It was around this time that Winfield started to come to terms with his sexual identity.

Paul Winfield in "High Chaparral"/ Source: Wikimedia

Paul Winfield in "High Chaparral"/ Source: Wikimedia

In a powerful monologue, Winfield poured out all the repressed passion and sadness of a man forced to hide his love from an unforgiving world.

MOVING TO SAN FRANCISCO TO FIND HIMSELF

In 1975, Winfield moved from Hollywood to San Francisco, and embraced his identity as a gay man, at least in his private life.

The "Star Trek" actor would go on to meet the love of his life, with whom he would spend the next three decades.

Paul Winfield poses for headshot | Source: Getty Images

Paul Winfield poses for headshot | Source: Getty Images

KEEPING HIS SEXUALITY UNDER WRAPS

According to close friends, Winfield was openly gay in his private life but kept his sexuality under wraps in fear that it might harm his career. 

The man who portrayed Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1978 television miniseries "King," starred in "The Terminator," "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan," and "Star Trek: The Next Generation," thought that being seen as openly gay might limit the roles he was offered.

PAUL WINFIELD'S LAST YEARS

In 2002, Winfield suffered a terrible blow when his partner of 30 years Charles Gillan died of bone cancer.

Winfield, who had been battling obesity and diabetes for many years, succumbed to a heart attack two years later at the Queen of Angels – Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles.

He was buried alongside his beloved Charles at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Los Angeles

THE ROLE OF PAUL WINFIELD'S LIFE

Although Paul Winfield spent most of his adult life concealing his sexuality from his public, there was one unforgettable moment during the 1984 thriller "Mike's Murderer" when he poured out his own anguish and passion.

In the movie, Debra Winger is a woman struggling to come to terms with the murder of an ex-boyfriend. She confronts Winfield as a record executive who was once romantically involved with the dead lover.

In a powerful monologue, Winfield poured out all the repressed passion and sadness of a man forced to hide his love from an unforgiving world.

New generations of actors and actresses can now openly live their truth in a way that he would approve and applaud.

He and his art came together as never before.

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