R.I.P. Dick Van Patten

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 in Blog | No Comments

Known best for his roles on 1970’s televisionDick Van Patten including Eight is Enough and The Love Boat, actor Richard Vincent Van Patten[ref]Variety[/ref] has exited the planet after 86 years of making people smile.

His death occurred in a Santa Monica hospital following a long battle with complications from diabetes, according to his agent Budd Burton Moss[ref]CNN[/ref] and his publicist Jeff Ballard[ref]NPR[/ref].

The Kev Gardens[ref]Wikipedia[/ref], New York native was born on December 9, 1928 to interior decorator Richard Van Patten Sr. and Josephine Van Patten (neé Acerno)[ref]Film Reference[/ref].

Van Patten began his prolific career in 1935 at the age of seven, in the play Tapestry in Gray at New York’s Shubert Theatre[ref]Film Reference[/ref]. Billed as “Dickie Van Patten,”[ref]Fox News[/ref] he portrayed “The Child.”

From there, his prolific career seemed to go non-stop, with over 40 stage appearances and major tours[ref]Film Reference[/ref]. His prolific career also includes numerous television and film roles, including but not limited to) the following:


  • 7th Heaven
  • Adam’s Rib
  • Adam-12
  • Arnie
  • Arrested Development
  • Banacek
  • Banyon
  • Barnaby Jones
  • Baywatch
  • Boy Meets World
  • Burke’s Law
  • C.P.O. Sharkey
  • Cannon
  • Chopper One
  • Crazy Like a Fox
  • Diagnosis: Murder
  • Eight Is Enough
  • Eight Is Enough: A Family Reunion
  • Eight Is Enough Wedding
  • Ellery Queen
  • Emergency!
  • Family Guy
  • Finder of Lost Loves
  • Great Performances
  • Growing Pains
  • Happy Days
  • Hec Ramsey

  • Hot in Cleveland
  • Hot l Baltimore
  • Hotel
  • I Dream Of Jeannie
  • Insight
  • Kolchak: The Night Stalker
  • Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman
  • Love, American Style
  • Mama
  • Masquerade
  • Maude
  • Maybe This Time
  • McGee and Me!
  • McMillan & Wife
  • Medical Center
  • Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer
  • Murder, She Wrote
  • Naked City
  • One Day at a Time
  • Phyllis
  • Rags to Riches
  • Rawhide
  • Sanford and Son
  • Sierra
  • That Girl
  • The Brian Keith Show
  • The Don Rickles Show

  • The Doris Day Show
  • The Facts of Life
  • The Girl with Something Extra
  • The Golden Palace
  • The Governor & J.J.
  • The Love Boat
  • The Love Boat (TV movie)
  • The Love Boat: The Next Wave
  • The New Adventures of Wonder Woman
  • The New Dick Van Dyke Show
  • The New Mike Hammer
  • The Odd Couple: Together Again
  • The Partners
  • The Paul Lynde Show
  • The Rookies
  • The Six Million Dollar Man
  • The Streets of San Francisco
  • The Tony Randall Show
  • The Weird Al Show
  • Thicker than Water
  • Too Close for Comfort
  • Touched by an Angel
  • WIOU
  • Wait Till Your Father Gets Home
  • What’s Happening!!
  • When Things Were Rotten
  • Young Doctor Malone

Motion Picture

  • Violent Midnight
  • The Secret Dream Models of Oliver Nibble (short)
  • Charly
  • Zachariah
  • Making It
  • Beware! The Blob
  • Joe Kidd
  • Dirty Little Billy
  • Snowball Express
  • Soylent Green
  • Westworld
  • Superdad
  • The Strongest Man in the World
  • Treasure of Matecumbe
  • Gus

  • Freaky Friday
  • The Shaggy D.A.
  • High Anxiety
  • Nutcracker Fantasy
  • Lunch Wagon
  • Spaceballs
  • The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking
  • Going to the Chapel
  • Final Embrace
  • Body Trouble
  • Robin Hood: Men in Tights
  • Who Killed Skippy’s Master?
  • Guys & Dolls
  • A Dangerous Place
  • For Goodness Sake II

  • Love Is All There Is
  • Evasive Action
  • Angel on Abbey Street
  • Y2K – World in Crisis
  • Big Brother Trouble
  • The Road Ahead
  • The Price of Air
  • Groom Lake
  • The Sure Hand of God
  • Quiet Kill
  • Freezerburn
  • The Christmas Conspiracy
  • Opposite Day
  • Sarah’s Choice
  • You’ll Never Amount to Anything

This video is perhaps one of Van Patten’s first television series roles… a 1940’s series entitled Mama:

However, this is his best known and loved role:

He was the kindest man you could ever meet in life. A loving family man. They don’t make them like him anymore

— Jeff Ballard[ref]Hollywood Reporter[/ref]

Van Patten is survived by[ref]Hollywood Reporter[/ref]

  • His wife of 62 years Patricia Van Patten, a former June Taylor Dancer
  • His three sons, actors:
    • Nels
    • Jimmy
    • Vincent
  • His sister Joyce Van Patten
  • His niece Talia Balsam
  • His half-brother, the Emmy® Award winning director Tim Van Patten.



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