Notable for his character roles in films such as Marie (1985), Fried Green Tomatoes (1991), and Falling Down (1993), he is also remembered for his appearances in episodes of Three's Company, The Waltons, The Bronx Zoo, and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
After serving in the United States Army during the Korean War, he began his acting career by appearing in early 1970s Broadway productions of The Playboy of the Western World, An Enemy of the People, Antigone, and The Last of Mrs. Lincoln. He went on to make his cinematic debut in the acclaimed 1972 thriller Deliverance.
He was born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee, where he helped establish a stage company called the Front Street Theatre.
He and Joel Higgins were both in the cast of the short-lived comedy series Best of the West.