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Victor Mature, '40s "hunk' actor, dies at 86

Victor Mature, the brawny star of the 1940s and '50s who played Samson in Samson and Delilah and Doc Holliday in John Ford's My Darling Clementine, has died. He was 86.

Mature, who largely retired from films around 1960, had suffered from cancer for three years, said a longtime friend, Zollie Volchok. The San Diego County coroner's office said it was notified that Mature died Wednesday.

Tall, dark-haired and muscular, with heavy-lidded eyes and a full mouth, Mature earned the nickname "beautiful hunk of man" in such films as One Million B.C. and Song of the Islands.

While first making his name as a glamor boy star with a devil-may-care attitude, he gradually gained more critical respect in the late 1940s in such films as Cry of the City and Kiss of Death.

Mature was born Jan. 29, 1913 _ some references say 1915 and 1916 _ in Louisville, Ky., the son of an Austrian immigrant.

He was married five times. Survivors include his wife, Lorey, a former Chicago opera singer, and their daughter, Victoria.

A funeral service was to be held in Louisville on Tuesday.