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Lewis Frederick "Lew" Ayres III (December 28, 1908 December 30, 1996) was an American actor.

He appeared in many films during The Pre-Code Era and The Golden Age of Hollywood. He is known for his memorable appearance in the Lewis Milestone film adaptation of All Quiet on the Western Front and was one of the most popular actors throughout the 1930s. He was also a musician, playing banjo in a band as a teenager, but his interest withered away to acting after he left school.

Strangely, Ayres' acting popularity would only be for a decade and dimmed greatly after World War II; this might have been related to the fact that he'd initially declared himself a conscientious objector, although he later served in the Army as a medic, earning three battle stars. He continued to act after the war in films and television, earning a Best Actor Academy Award nomination for Johnny Belinda.

Ayres was married three times, including to Ginger Rogers, and had a son named Justin.


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