James LaRue Avery (November 27, 1945 - December 31, 2013) was an American actor. He was best known for his role in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air as the stern but loving head of the Banks household, Phillip Banks. Avery also provided the voice of Shredder in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles which aired from 1987 to 1996.
On December 31, 2013, Avery passed away at the age of 68 from complications following open heart surgery. He was survived by his wife, Barbara Avery, his stepson, Kevin Waters and his mother, Florence Avery. Avery is the first main cast member of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air to pass away.