LOS ANGELES (AP) – Adam Rich, the pageboy mop-topped child actor who charmed TV audiences in the late 1970s as “America’s little brother” on “At Is Enough” has died Is. He was 54 years old.

Rich died Saturday in the Brentwood section of Los Angeles, said Lt. Amy Earl of the Los Angeles County Medical-Examiner’s Office of the Coroner. The cause of death was under investigation but was not considered suspicious.

Rich had a limited acting career after playing Nicholas Bradford, the youngest of eight children, on the ABC hit dramedy that ran from 1977 to 1981.

He had several altercations with police related to drugs and alcohol – and sought treatment at the Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage.

Publicist Danny Derain said Rich was suffering from a form of depression that defied treatment and sought to remove the stigma around talking about mental illness. He unsuccessfully tried experimental treatment for years and remained sober.

Derane said she and others close to Rich were concerned in recent weeks when they could not reach him.

“She was a very kind, generous, loving soul,” Derane told The Associated Press. “Being a famous actor isn’t necessarily what he wanted to be… He had no ego, not an ounce of it.”

Former “At Is Enough” child actor Adam Rich appears in Van Nuys, California, court on August 20, 1991. Rich, a pageboy mop-topped child actor who charmed TV audiences in the 1970s as “America’s little brother.” “Eight Is Enough” passed away on Saturday, January 7, 2023, in the Brentwood section of Los Angeles. He was 54 years old. The cause of death was under investigation but was not considered suspicious. (AP Photo/Nick Ut, File)

Rich often discussed his condition on Twitter and noted in October that he had been sober for seven years. He said he was not perfect – citing arrests, multiple stints in rehab, multiple overdoses and “countless detox (and) relapses” – and urged his nearly 19,000 followers to never give up.

“Human beings are not built to tolerate mental illness,” Rich tweeted in September. “The mere fact that some people think of him as weak, or lacking in willpower, is utterly ridiculous… because it’s quite the opposite! A very, very strong person to fight such ailments… A warrior is needed.”

Rich also tweeted a picture from his heyday with former child star Mickey Rooney.

“Everyone used to tell me, ‘You are the modern Mickey Rooney,'” he tweeted. “But when Mickey Rooney himself told me, it meant helluva more to me!”

Rich is best known to a generation of TV viewers as the younger brother of a syndicated newspaper columnist, played by Dick Van Patten, who is introduced to his wife in the show’s first season. Eight children have to be raised alone after death.

Rich starred in the series “Code Red” from 1981–82 and voiced the character Presto the Magician on “Dungeons & Dragons” from 1983–85. He reprized his most famous role in two “Eight Is Enough” TV movie reunions.

But his acting career was balanced by single-episode appearances on some of the most popular TV shows of the time: “The Love Boat,” “The Six Million Dollar Man,” “Silver Spoons,” and “Baywatch.”



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