‘Diff’rent Strokes’ Actor Conrad Bain Dies at 89

Jan 16, 2013 1:27pm
gty conrad bain gary coleman todd bridges ll 130116 wblog Diffrent Strokes Actor Conrad Bain Dies at 89

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Actor Conrad Bain, who played father Phillip Drummond on “Diff’rent Strokes,” died Monday night in Livermore, Calif.

His daughter told The Associated Press that Bain died of natural causes. He was 89.

TMZ, which first reported his death, quoted Bain’s daughter Jennifer saying, “He was an amazing person. He was a lot like Mr. Drummond, but much more interesting in real life. He was an amazing father.”

Bain became a household name starring opposite Gary Coleman and Todd Bridges on the iconic 1980s series. Coleman and Bridges played two brothers from Harlem, who are taken in by Bain’s character to live with him and his daughter, played by Dana Plato, on Manhattan’s Park Avenue.

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After the series ended, the young child stars led troubled lives. Plato died in 1999 of a prescription drug overdose at age 34. Coleman died in 2010 at age 42 from a brain hemorrhage after years of financial and legal troubles. Bridges, 47, has turned his life around after struggling with drug addiction and facing criminal charges. Last year, he split from his wife of 14 years.

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Bain, who hailed from Canada, played conservative neighbor Dr. Arthur Harmon on the feminist sitcom “Maude” before starring on “Diff’rent Strokes,” which debuted in 1978. He also was a journeyman actor on stage, screen and television. After “Diff’rent Strokes” ended in 1986, he virtually retired from acting, reprising his role as Drummond in the 1996 series finale of the “Fresh Prince of Bel Air.”

He is survived by three sons and one daughter and a twin brother, Bonar Bain, also an actor.

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