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What Was Michael Clarke Duncan's Connection To One Of Baseball's Most Notorious Promotions

By Chuck Sudo in Arts & Entertainment on Sep 4, 2012 2:00PM

Duncan in 2011 (s_bukley/Shutterstock)
Actor Michael Clarke Duncan, best known for his Oscar-nominated performance in The Green Mile, passed away Monday at the age of 54. According to a statement released by his fiancee, reality TV star Omarosa Manigault-Stallworth, Mr. Duncan suffered a heart attack July 13 and never recovered.

Mr. Duncan was a Chicago native and a graduate of King High School on the South side. His journey to becoming an actor included bouncing at various Chicago nightclubs, digging ditches for Peoples Gas, and serving as a bodyguard for actor Jamie Foxx. His friendships with Foxx and fellow actors Will Smith and Martin Lawrence helped him obtain small acting roles before he struck pay dirt in The Green Mile. He turned heads with his performance as John Coffey, a "gentle giant" with healing powers falsely accused of raping and killing two white girls.

Mr. Duncan also claimed to be among the thousands at Disco Demolition, the 1979 baseball promotion where radio personality Steve Dahl blew up a crate of disco records, which led to the Chicago White Sox forfeiting the second game of a twi-night doubleheader against the Detroit Tigers

Mr. Duncan claimed he was among the first 100 people to take the field in the melee that followed, slid into second and third bases, and even told then-Mouthpiece Sports' reporter Sarah Spain he stole a Bill Melton baseball bat from the dugout.

There's a small problem with that story: Slugger Bill Melton's last at-bat was in August 1977 with the Cleveland Indians. Disco Demolition was on July 12, 1979.