Woolford, who wrote, directed and produced the 2013 independent film The Haumana, died on Monday afternoon at a hospital in Oahu, Hawaii, three days after suffering a severe stroke on Nov. 25, his publicist Tracy Larrua confirmed to PEOPLE.
Woolford was in the process of finalizing his follow-up film, The Haumana 2, Larrua stated. The Haumana told the story of a host of a struggling luau show who reconnects with his culture after he takes over a high school hula class for boys.
Cast mate Daniel Dae Kim also took to Twitter to share the sad news. “As talented as you were, I will remember you most for your kindness. Thank you for sharing your light with us, @KeoWoolford. Rest In Peace.”
Woolford, a native of Honolulu, had a recurring role as Det. James Chang on the remake of CBS’ Hawaii Five-0, as well as small roles in films like Happy Texas (1999), Act of Valor (2012) and Godzilla (2014). He starred in more than 300 performances as the King of Siam in The King & I at the London Palladium.
The film closed the 2013 Hawaii International Film Festival, and Woolford received a special jury prize at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival for best first feature. (Courtesy Entertainment Weekly)