Born Laurence Tureaud, he became known as a "tough-guy" star on The A-Team, as boxer Clubber Lang in Rocky III, and for his work as a professional wrestler.
He grew up in housing projects called the Robert Taylor Homes and created his renowned persona through his work as a bouncer and bodyguard.
After helping clean up the effects of Hurricane Katrina, he decided to stop wearing his famous gold jewelry. He starred on the reality show I Pity the Fool, the title being taken from his A-Team character's catchphrase.
His father's name was Nathaniel, and he was the youngest boy out of his seven brothers and four sisters.
He was once employed as a bodyguard for Diana Ross.