Veteran actor and Western Slope resident Dennis Weaver has died. He initially became famous for his role as the deputy to sheriff Matt Dillon in the legendary series "Gunsmoke." Weaver later became well known for playing common sense characters with a western flavor to them. That fame peaked when he starred in the popular 1970's detective drama "McCloud." In his non acting life, Weaver was an ardent environmental activist. He and his wife built a solar powered home in Ridgway, CO. out of recycled materials, including discarded tires. He died in his Colorado home of complications from cancer at the age of 81.