Actor Heath Freeman, whose creepy portrayal of serial killer Howard Epps spanned the first two seasons of the Fox crime drama “Bones,” has died at age 41, his manager confirmed Monday. The cause of death has not been released.
“He was extremely proud of his recent film work and was very excited for the next chapter of his career,” Joe Montifiore said in a statement to People. “His remarkable legacy as a son, brother, uncle, friend, extraordinarily gifted actor and producer, consummate cook, and man with the most infectious and spectacular laugh, will live on forever.”
Former Miss USA Shanna Moakler wrote on social media that Freeman, who also appeared in “NCIS” (2003) and “ER” (2001), was a “talented actor, director, producer, outstanding chef and a solid friend.”
Gina Carano, who co-starred with Freeman in the recently filmed “Terror on the Prairie,” also mourned the performer’s death with an Instagram post.
“I was just giving you a big wrap party hug a week ago,” Carano wrote. “I wanted to keep you for a lifetime and now I am going to carry you for a lifetime in my heart. I didn’t know our journey would be cut this short and my heart is shattering.”
He is most famous for playing the scheming Howard Epps on “Bones” from 2005 to 2007. ScreenRant has named Howard one of the “worst” (meaning most evil) killers in the show’s history and someone “who really gets under the team’s skin.” His character, influenced by the purity obsession of his abusive mother, preyed mostly on young women. Howard was first introduced as a prisoner awaiting execution, and in the second season he escaped prison and left clues to more victims.
Freeman studied drama at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and the University of Texas at Austin before launching his entertainment career, Entertainment Weekly reported.
And here he is as a gemologist on “NCIS”: