Michael K. Williams, ‘The Wire’ Actor, Dead at Age 54

by Jonathan Howard

Michael K. Williams, known for starring in The Wire, was found dead in his Brooklyn apartment this afternoon. According to law enforcement, there was drug paraphernalia in the apartment. While nothing has been confirmed as a cause of death, drug overdose is suspected. Williams was just 54 years old.

The New York Post had the details. Williams was found in the living room of his penthouse on Kent Avenue. It is reported that his nephew is the person that found him. Through his work on HBO’s hit show, The Wire, fans, and viewers fell in love with him on screen. As Omar Little, he helped make the show such a success.

Although the show stopped airing new episodes in 2008, it has garnered a cult following. Now, one of the most recognizable faces from the show has passed away. Of course, Williams worked on a multitude of projects in his acting career, and fans know him from a number of shows and films.

As a native of Brooklyn, Michael K. Williams always stayed true to his roots. From the Flatbush neighborhood, he was born to a Bahamian mother and his American father, Booker T. Williams. Growing up in the Vanderveer Projects, he grew up as a troubled youth. However, acting was his path to stardom.

Michael K. Williams: Career and Impact

Michael K. Williams had quite a career, even for someone as accomplished as he is. It was back in 1996 when he picked up one of his first acting roles. Out of all people, Tupac Shakur discovered the young actor and gave him a role in Bullet. In the movie, he played High Top. He was the brother and a goon for the drug kingpin Tank in the movie. After that role, it was a quick road to fame. Between his time playing in Bullet to starring in The Wire only six years went by.

Before taking on that first role in 1996, the actor earned his signature look, the har way. It was on his 25th birthday when Williams met the wrong end of a razor blade. An altercation broke out on Jamaica Avenue, and after the wound healed, the actor had his legendary facial scar. It allowed his career to flourish. He landed modeling jobs, acting jobs, and more thanks to the facial wound. Talk about turning a negative into a positive.

Over the years, Williams found his own way in the industry. He was Brooklyn, through and through, and stayed true to his roots. As a struggling young actor and dancer, he spent a short time being homeless until he got a couple of jobs as a background dancer. Soon, modeling and acting became a reality and his career started to take off.

Michael K. Williams will be deeply missed by fans, friends, peers, and loved ones.