‘Eight Is Enough’ Actor Dick Van Patten Dead at 86
Dick Van Patten, the actor best known for role as the patriarch on the classic 1970s TV series Eight Is Enough, has died at age 86. His death was confirmed by Budd Burton Moss, Van Patten’s agent.
Van Patten died early Tuesday morning at a Santa Monica, California hospital, and although no cause of death was not immediately released, Moss stated that his client and friend has been in poor health in recent years.
“He had been ill for a long time,” said Moss.
Van Patten enjoyed a career that lasted nearly his entire life, having started out as a child actor on the ’40s show Mama. As his career progressed, he became one of the most ubiquitous actors in the industry, both in film and on television. He appeared in the law enforcement drama Naked City, the sitcom I Dream of Jeannie, the comedy anthology Love, American Style, and three Mel Brooks movies (High Anxiety, Spaceballs, and Robin Hood: Men In Tights) in addition to such films as Charly and Westworld. His talents also took him to Broadway for several plays throughout his career. He also recurred on the popular series The Love Boat.
But it was his role on Eight Is Enough that earned him the most acclaim. He played Tom Bradford, a Sacramento, California, newspaper columnist with eight children, and it was an instant hit, due in larger part to the popularity of the book upon which it was based, written by journalist Thomas Braden. The show ran for four seasons, lasting from 1977 to 1981.
Our condolences are with Van Patten’s family and friends during this difficult time. R.I.P.