Mickey Rooney, one of Hollywood's longest-tenured actors, died in his California home Sunday at the age of 93. His oldest child, Mickey Rooney, Jr., is an evangelical Christian.
Rooney, who appeared in more than 300 films, died at his North Hollywood home Sunday afternoon, The Associated Press reported, quoting Los Angeles Police Commander Andrew Smith.
The actor, who was a superstar as a teenager for the films in which he played Andy Hardy and whose career in the film industry spanned from the 1920s to the 2010s, shared the home with his son, Mark Rooney, and daughter-in-law, Charlene Rooney, according to The Los Angeles Times.
Rooney, who died of natural causes, received numerous awards, including a Juvenile Academy Award, an Honorary Academy Award, two Golden Globes and an Emmy Award. He gained international fame for his leading role as Henry Dailey in The Family Channel's "The Adventures of the Black Stallion."
According to Charlene, the legend had recently flown to Vancouver, Canada, where he worked on the upcoming film "Night at the Museum 3."
Rooney, who was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., was married eight times. "My partners weren't what we call in horse racing parlance routers," he said in a 1993 interview with People Magazine. "They were sprinters. They went out of the gate, but then they stopped. They couldn't go the distance."
The actor had nine children, and 19 grandchildren. After his wife, Barbara Ann Thomason, and his mother died, he got into alcohol and drugs and suffered various financial problems, including a bankruptcy.
In a 1991 book, Rooney wrote about a religious experience he had at a coffee shop at Harrah's in Lake Tahoe, Calif. A busboy with blond curls whispered in his ear, "Mr. Rooney, Jesus Christ loves you very much." He checked with the manager but found no busboy who fit that description. Rooney believed he was visited by an angel.
"I believe God gave me my career. I was sent here to do my Father's work," The New York Times quoted Rooney as saying in July 1993.
Rooney was once an active member of the Church of Religious Science, part of the New Thought movement.
The actor's first son, Mickey Rooney, Jr., who has also worked in the film industry, is a born-again Christian and lives in Hemet, Calif.
After appearing as a Mouseketeer in the Mickey Mouse Club in 1955-1960 along with his brother Tim, Rooney Jr. played his first movie role in 1967 in "Hot Rods to Hell." He later appeared in the television film "Beyond the Bermuda Triangle" in 1975, and in the movie "Honeysuckle Rose" in 1980.