Financial problems also plagued Coleman following his "Diff'rent Strokes" run. In 1989, he sued his parents and former manager over misappropriation of his $3.8 million trust fund. In 1993, he won a ruling of almost $1.3 million. But in 1999, Coleman filed for bankruptcy, attributing his financial problems to mismanagement of his trust.
Coleman's health may have also sidelined his career. He suffered from the congenital kidney condition that halted his growth at an early age and despite two kidney transplants, required him to undergo daily dialysis.
Because of his unstable condition, Coleman did not undergo any surgery while hospitalized just before his death, according to Alcantar.
"In recent years Gary Coleman has had difficulties, not only with health issues, but also with his personal and public life," Alcantar said. "At times, it may not have been apparent, but he always has had fond memories of being an entertainer and appreciates his fans for all their support over the years."
As he grew older, Coleman had multiple run-ins with the law. In 1998, while working as a mall security guard, he punched Tracy Fields, a bus driver who asked for his autograph, and was charged with assault. Coleman was ordered to pay Fields' resulting hospital bills, and though his monetary loss was less than $2,000, the cost of the assault was dire to his reputation -- much of Hollywood ceased to take him seriously, chalking him up as a child actor gone bad.
In September 2008, Coleman got into a similar altercation and car accident after a 24-year-old tried to take his photo at a Utah bowling alley. Coleman pleaded no contest to charges of disorderly conduct and reckless driving stemming from that case.
Coleman and Price couple married on a Nevada mountaintop in 2007 after meeting on the set of a 2006 film called "Church Ball." She was 22, he was 40. Shortly after they sat down with "Inside Edition," and it looked like the honeymoon was already over.
"We are not real showy love people," Coleman said. "We do all that at home."
"He is not romantic, but I'm kind of different," Shannon said.
"Gary and Shannon did have a very tumultuous relationship," People.com's Fleeman said.
One of Coleman's final public appearances was in May 2008, when he and Price went on "Divorce Court" not to end their marriage, but to save it.
Price complained that she and Coleman had ugly fights and that the actor threw temper tantrums "like a 5-year-old does." Coleman admitted to Judge Lynn Toler that he had a bad attitude, but that was because he hadn't had an easy life.
"I don't have any friends and don't have any intention of making any," he said, according to a transcript of the show. "People will stab you in the back, mistreat you, talk about me behind your back, steal from you. And they're not really your friends. They're only there because you're a celebrity or because they want to get something from you."
"We may go a week and not speak to each other," Coleman said. "I have very low self esteem. I don't feel very successful in life."
In 2009 Price was charged with domestic violence and disorderly conduct. This past January Coleman was taken in for a domestic violence warrant.
The year 2010 was particularly hard for Coleman.