Alan Thicke, who played reassuring father Dr. Jason Seaver on the sitcom Growing Pains from 1985-92, died of a heart attack December 13 at the age of 69, according to The New York Times.
Born Alan Willis Jeffrey March 1, 1947, in Ontario, the Canadian actor was also a singer and songwriter who penned numerous TV theme songs, including those for Wheel of Fortune, Celebrity Sweepstakes, and The Joker's Wild. With first wife Gloria Loring and Al Burton, he also co-wrote the theme songs for two classic TV sitcoms, Diff’rent Strokes and its spinoff, The Facts of Life.
Mr. Thicke's TV career also included work as a soap opera actor (The Bold and the Beautiful), a host of a game show (Pictionary), and a late-night talk-show host (Thick of the Night). But it was his work on Growing Pains, which made a teen star out of Kirk Cameron and kicked off the career of Leonardo DiCaprio, for which Thicke will most be remembered. In fact, the actor was nominated for a Golden Globe in 1988 for his work in the series and can also be found on TV Guide's list of “50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time.”
Also a writer, Mr. Thicke penned How Men Have Babies: The Pregnant Father's Survival Guide and How to Raise Kids Who Won't Hate You. He also received Primetime Emmy nominations for his co-writing of The Barry Manilow Special and America 2-Night. His over 100 acting credits included roles in I'm in the Band, Hollywood North, Ice Angel, Hope & Gloria, 7th Heaven, Betrayal of the Dove, and Not Quite Human.
Mr. Thicke had one Broadway credit, playing slick lawyer Billy Flynn in the long-running, Tony-winning revival of John Kander and Fred Ebb's Chicago. The actor played a limited engagement in the hit musical in September 1998 after a brief stint in the show’s first national tour.
Mr. Thicke is survived by sons Robin, a singer and songwriter; Brennan; and Carter; as well as his third wife, Tanya Callau.