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Gossip & Rumors: Model, 'guiding Light' Actor Dead At 80

GOSSIP & RUMORS: Model, ‘Guiding Light’ actor dead at 80

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Renauld White, a trailblazing model and actor best known for his role in the soap opera “Guiding Light,” has died. He was 80.

His friend and fashion designer Jeffrey Banks confirmed to Women’s Wear Daily that White died Wednesday, June 26, in hospice care at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan.

The cause of death is still unknown.

His funeral will be held on July 12 in his hometown of Newark, New Jersey.

Renauld White at a GQ event in NYC. WireImage
Renauld White at the 3rd Annual Thurgood Marshall College Fund fashion show on October 25, 2008. Getty Images

Banks also posted a tribute to White on Instagram Thursday.

“It is with tremendous sadness that I report that my dearest friend and work colleague RENAULD WHITE, left us yesterday,” Banks wrote.

Renauld White in October 2011. Neil Rasmus/BFA/Shutterstock

“Modeling for me from the very start of my career RENAULD was always the perfect gentleman and a great ambassador for my brand,” he continued. “When first introduced to my Mother she claimed instantly that he was my ‘older brother.’ I only wished that was so.”

Banks added: “I shall miss our talks and times together, but will always remember the barriers you broke in the fashion industry and the love you shared as a trusted friend. Good night sweet Prince, and flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.”

Renauld White in November 2021. Rupert Ramsay/

White was a game changer in the modeling industry.

His career started in the 1960s where he appeared in shows by Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren and worked with Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, Versace, Armani, and more.

Renauld White modeling. Penske Media via Getty Images
Renauld White in the Jeffrey Banks fall 1978 fur collection. Penske Media via Getty Images

In 1979, he became the second Black model to ever appear on the cover of GQ.

“There were very few Black models at the time. He really broke barriers,” Banks said about White to WWD, adding, “When they had a party for him in Newark for his 50-year anniversary in the fashion industry, he was very proud of the progress and how he opened the doors for other people.”

Renauld White on the cover of GQ in November 1979. GQ

White said in 2011 that he pushed agents at Wilhelmina, a modeling and talent agency, to be more inclusive to people of color.

“I wanted to bring about change. I really confronted the establishment about why there were not more Black male images,” he said at the time, per WWD. “At first, I thought I was going to get thrown in jail and beaten up because of my approach. But then they realized that they were wrong and that they were behind society and behind the times, and that they had to listen to me.”

Renauld White at the Dior Homme Spring 1979 Menswear Collection Fashion Show. Penske Media via Getty Images
Renauld White at the Mark of Lion Menswear Spring 1976 Sportswear Collection Presentation. Penske Media via Getty Images

White transitioned from modeling to acting and was on “Guiding Light” for two years in the 1980s.

He played William Reynolds for seven episodes on the CBS soap opera.

White was also in the 2014 TV movie “Gun Hill” and the 2017 horror movie “Central Park,” according to his IMDb.

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