Brad William Henke, ‘Orange Is the New Black’ star and ex-NFL player, dead at 56

Brad William Henke, a former professional football player, died. He later went on to have a successful acting career. He was 56.

Matt DelPiano, his manager, confirmed that Henke had died in his sleep on Nov. 29 but didn’t give any cause of death.

Brad was a kind and joyful man. He was a talented actor and loved being part of the community. We loved him back. DelPiano released a statement saying that his wife and their family are in our thoughts.”

Henke is most well-known for his role as Desi Piscatella, a gay corrections officer. He was portrayed in the Netflix series “Orange Is the New Black.” This role earned him the status of a sex icon in the bear community. The sub-section that loves a bigger and hairier man.

Henke accepted the recognition, telling in 2016: “I feel honored. It’s amazing. It’s a great compliment. It’s a compliment. Who wouldn’t want them to be attractive? Piscatella can be a bit of a bad character, but they seem to like the fact that it’s real.

Henke was raised in Littleton and was born in Columbus in Nebraska. Henke played college football for the University of Arizona before being drafted by New York Giants in 1989. He then went on to play defensive line for Denver Broncos including at Super Bowl XXIV against the San Francisco 49ers that year.

In 1994, he retired from the league due to ankle injuries. He moved to Los Angeles to coach — but found a new career as an actor.

Brad William Henke attends an award ceremony honoring nominees to the Screen Actors Guild Awards, Jan. 20, 2018.

The journey began when his friend, a pro-football player, alerted him about a casting call for actors to play football players.

Looper was told by that he booked the first commercial he ever went out to for. It was for Hungry Hunter restaurants. It took me half a day to shoot this thing, and I booked it. It seemed so easy, I thought. But as I was walking into the room, I noticed an older man who I had met at the callback. I believe they had hired us both to help me in case I got hurt. I was so unaware.

Henke said that he regretted not taking action sooner back in 1998 to The Tucson Citizen. But I believe my life experiences have been very helpful before I found my calling. My career is my own, and I am not judging what I did on the football pitch.


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