LOS ANGELES - Veteran Hollywood actor Rance Howard, 89, the father of director Ron Howard, died Saturday.

Ron Howard announced his father's death on Twitter on Saturday afternoon. He praised his father for the ability to balance ambition with great personal integrity.

"A depression-era farm boy, his passion for acting changed the course of our family history," he wrote. "We love & miss U Dad."

Rance Howard's death also was confirmed by Michael Rosenberg, a spokesman for his son's production company.

The elder Howard was also the father of actor Clint Howard and the grandfather of actresses Bryce Dallas Howard and Paige Howard.

Rance Howard had been married to Jean Speegle Howard, who died in 2000. They met as teenagers doing a touring children's production in Oklahoma of classic fairy tales such as "Snow White" and "Cinderella." They married on the tour dressed in their costumes, with the bride dressed as Snow White and groom as a huntsman.

The elder Howard's acting career spanned several decades since the 1950s. He appeared in several of Ron Howard's films, including Apollo 13, A Beautiful Mind, Splash, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Parenthood, and Grand Theft Auto.

Other film credits include Chinatown and the 2013 drama Nebraska. On television, he appeared on many series including Seinfeld; Murder, She Wrote; NCIS: Los Angeles; Grey's Anatomy; and Ron Howard's starring series, Happy Days.

Associated Press Television Writer Frazier Moore in New York contributed to this article.