Eight is Enough Star Dick Van Patten Dies
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA – June 23, 2015 (Gephardt Daily) – 86 year-old TV star Dick Van Patten passed away early Tuesday morning from complications due to diabetes.
Best known as ‘Tom Bradford’ in the long-running TV show “Eight is Enough,” Van Patten began acting when he was a child.
According to his biography, after a successful career on Broadway, Van Patten began his television career in the 1950’s TV series “I Remember Mama,” in the role of Nels Hansen.
The actor became a staple in the 70’s, guest starring on many TV series like “Happy Days,” “Sanford and Son,” and “The Love Boat.”
Van Patten was also a poker enthusiast and even was a commentator for “The World Series of Poker” from 1993 to 1995.
More recently, Van Patten made appearances on “Arrested Development,” “That ’70s Show “and “Hot in Cleveland.”
Van Patten also worked in many films including “Soylent Green,” “Westworld” and “Quiet Kill.” Van Patten was a favorite of Mel Brooks and had roles in 3 of Brook’s movies including “Spaceballs,” “High Anxiety” and “Robin Hood: Men in Tights.” Brooks had previously tapped Van Patten for his short-lived 1975 TV series, “When Things Were Rotten.”
An animal activist, Van Patten co-founded Dick Van Patten’s Natural Balance Pet Foods in 1989. He founded National Guide Dog Month which began in 2008 to raise awareness and money for non-profit guide dog schools in the United States accredited by the International Guide Dog Federation.
A devout family man, Van Patten was married to his wife, actress Pat Van Patten, for more than 60 years. The couple have three sons: Nels, Jimmy, and Vincent.