‘Different Strokes’ star Conrad Bain succumbs at 89
Actor played adopted father of Gary Coleman, Todd Bridges
Conrad Bain, who played Phillip Drummond on the ’80s hit “Diff’rent Strokes,” has died at 89.
The Canadian-born actor died at his Livermore, Calif., home on Monday of natural causes, according to reports.
Best known for his role as the rich father on “Diff’rent Strokes,” Bain’s acting career also included stints on Broadway (“Uncle Vanya,” “The Owl and the Pussycat,” “On Golden Pond,” “The Dining Room”) and film ( “Bananas, I Never Sang for My Father”); and the TV show “Maude.”
“Diff’rent Strokes” debuted on NBC in 1978, an era when television comedies tackled relevant social issues. “Diff’rent Strokes” touched on serious themes, but was known better as a family comedy that drew most of its laughs from its standout child actor, Gary Coleman.
Bain’s character Philip Drummond, a wealthy Manhattan widower, had promised his dying housekeeper that he would raise her sons, played by Coleman and Todd Bridges. Race and class relations became topics on the show as much as the typical trials of growing up.
Bridges is the only surviving regular member of the cast, as Dana Plato died in 1999 after a drug overdose, and the star of the show, Gary Coleman, died in 2010 after falling down a flight of stairs.
Charlotte Rae who appeared in the first season as housekeeper Edna Garrett, also survives.
Bridges told reporters, “I am deeply saddened by the sudden passing of Conrad, as we were looking forward to celebrating his 90th birthday next month. In addition to being a positive and supportive father figure both on and off-screen, Conrad was well-loved and made going to work each day enjoyable for all of us. He will be missed, but never forgotten.”
Bain married artist Monica Sloan in 1945. She died in 2009. He is survived by three children: Jennifer, Kent and Mark and a twin brother, Bonar.
Daniel Lee Jones, a native of Dekalb, Texas, passed away on Thursday, May 2, in Inglewood. He was 71.
He was born to Leonard Clevland Jones and Ida Mae Bailey on Jan. 17, 1942, the third of seven children.
Jones attended Booker T. Washington elementary and high schools. He was active in the high school band and choir.
After graduation, Jones moved to Los Angeles and attended Los Angeles City College and UCLA.
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Jeanne Cooper, who portrayed Katherine Chandler on “The Young and the Restless” for 40 years, died today of an undisclosed illness at age 84.
Her death was announced on Twitter and Facebook by her son, actor Corbin Bernsen, who is best known for his work on “L.A. Law” and has been providing his online followers with updates on his mother’s health for weeks.
Funeral services will be held Friday at 10 a.m. at First A.M.E. Church of Los Angeles for Lois Bernardine Murray, wife of former FAME pastor the Rev. Dr. Cecil “Chip” Murray.
She died April 27 from complications of a stroke. Murray was 83.
Entombment will take place at Inglewood Park Cemetery, 720 E. Florence Ave., Inglewood, and the repast will follow at the church, 2270 S. Harvard Blvd., Los Angeles.
Annette Funicello, one of the best-known members of the original 1950s “Mickey Mouse Club” and a star of numerous 1960s “beach party” films, died Monday at a California hospital, the Walt Disney Co. said.
Funicello, who was 70, “died peacefully from complications due to multiple sclerosis, a disease she battled for more than 25 years,” the Disney statement said.
Legendary film critic Roger Ebert, who this week said he was facing a recurrence of cancer, has died at 70, according to the Chicago Sun-Times, which syndicated his column.
In an essay on his blog Tuesday, Ebert explained he was planning to slow down and reduce the number of movie reviews he wrote. Ebert had already lost his voice and much of his jaw after battling thyroid and salivary gland cancer.