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Dick Van Patten, 'Eight Is Enough' Dad, Dies at 86

Image: Dick Van Patten, 'Eight Is Enough' Dad, Dies at 86
(Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images, file)

By    |   Tuesday, 23 Jun 2015 03:37 PM

Dick Van Patten, the actor who played the “Eight Is Enough” dad, died Tuesday at a Santa Monica hospital in California from diabetes complications. He was 86.

Renowned for his round-faced geniality as an actor, Van Patten was born in New York and began his career as a child model and actor before debuting on Broadway at age seven, according to USA Today. After he transitioned Hollywood as an adult, Van Patten became well known for his comedic roles in both film and TV.

Perhaps his greatest success as an actor resulted from his portrayal of Tom Bradford, the widower father of eight children on the TV show “Eight Is Enough,” which aired from 1977 to 1981. Van Patten later wrote his autobiography entitled “Eighty Is Not Enough” in 2009. He also appeared on “The Love Boat,” “Happy Days,” and “Touched by an Angel,” as well as in movies like “Spaceballs,” “Robin Hood: Men in Tights,” and “High Anxiety” with director Mel Brooks.

Van Patten was also celebrated for his animal enthusiast causes, including his co-founding of Dick Van Patten’s Natural Balance Pet Foods in 1989 and the founding of National Guide Dog Month in 2008 to raise awareness and support for nonprofit guide dog schools, according to Fox News.

He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Patricia, a former June Taylor Dancer, and their three sons — Nels, Jimmy, and Vincent, all of whom are actors.

Betty Buckley, the actress who played Van Patten’s second wife on “Eight Is Enough," took to Twitter to share her condolences.



Social media users continued to show their support for his family as they honored Van Patten for his years of acting and service.



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Dick Van Patten, the actor who played the “Eight Is Enough” dad, died Tuesday at a Santa Monica hospital in California from diabetes complications. He was 86.
dick van patten, eight is enough, dad, dies
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2015-37-23
Tuesday, 23 Jun 2015 03:37 PM
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