Born July 1, 1935 in Bristol, England, Dave was an athletic youngster, but at the age of 13 he developed Juvenile Arthritis, which dashed any dreams of becoming an athlete. He spent over a year in a brace and was then encouraged by doctors to exercise to strengthen the muscles in his weak knees. At the age of 15, Dave turned to the Charles Altas Course and would eventually step up to weight training. He competed in junior body building competitions that would eventually lead him to the 1960 Mr. Universe Contest. Not having much luck in the body building world due to his tall size, Dave then switched to weight lifting. Dave found his niche and became the British Heavy Weight Weightlifting Champion, a title he held for three consecutive years. With his fitness expertise, Dave started his own gym, became a personal trainer for many celebrities, and wrote for a variety of weight lifting and fitness magazines, and wrote his own workout book “Fitness is Fun.”
Dave’s height of 6’7” and muscular physique attracted the attention of movie and television productions. Dave’s biggest break came when he met up with George Lucas and was offered the choice of playing either Darth Vader or Chewbacca. Dave immediately picked Darth Vader because he said “Everyone remembers the bad guy.” Although, he is most famously known as Darth Vader, Dave claims his favorite and most important role was the Green X Code Man –a super hero that taught road safety to children.
Unfortunately, Dave’s arthritis, that had plagued him as a child, caught up with him and he had to have both hips replaced and his ankle fused. But Dave is not going down without a fight, he’s an dedicated advocate for Arthritis research -he has his own fundraiser “The Force Against Arthritis, ” the vice president of the Physically Handicapped and Able-bodied Association, and a member of the Variety Club of Great Britain. Dave’s work with charitably services and the Green X Code were recognized when he was given the M.B.E. (Member of the British Empire) Award by Her Majesty the Queen in the year 2000.
As of July 2006, Dave is busy appearing at conventions around the world, making cameo appearances in films, such as the upcoming “The Perfect Woman,” and has recently published his autobiography and is now in the process of writing two more books.