Robin Thicke performs at a concert. Photo by Melissa Rose [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Robin Thicke is sure his late actor father is “the greatest man I ever met.” Photo by Melissa Rose [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
In possibly the finest of salutes to a father from his son, pop-soul singer Robin Thicke believes his dad, actor Alan Thicke, was “the greatest man I ever met.”

Alan Thicke, best known as the father in the 1985-92 ABC family comedy “Growing Pains,” died Tuesday. He was 69.

The Canadian-born actor was playing hockey with his 19-year-old son Carter at a rink in Burbank when he suffered an apparent heart attack. He was taken to Providence St. Joseph Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

At the time of his death, Thicke was starring in “Unusually Thicke” with his son Carter and wife Tanya on the cable network Pop. Described as a “reality sitcom,” its second season began Sept. 21.

Thicke guest starred in a second-season episode of the Netflix comedy “Fuller House,” which was released Friday and made a cameo appearance as himself in the premiere of the critically acclaimed NBC drama “This Is Us” on Sept. 20.

The Los Angeles Times spoke with Robin Thicke Tuesday evening and reported that he called his father “the greatest man I ever met” and “always a gentleman.” He confirmed that Thicke suffered a heart attack while playing hockey with his son Carter and that one of the last things he said was a compliment to his son on a nice shot.

“The good thing was that he was beloved and he had closure,” said Robin Thicke, who credited his dad, an accomplished musician himself, with being an inspiration and very supportive of his music career.

“I saw him a few days ago and told him how much I loved and respected him,” Robin Thicke told The Times.

Alan Thicke was born March 1, 1947, in Kirland Lake, Ontario. He began his career as a writer for television series and specials, receiving Emmy nominations in 1977 for a Barry Manilow special and in 1978 for his work on the syndicated talk show spoof “America 2-Night.”

Thicke also wrote the theme songs for the comedies “Diff’rent Strokes,” which he sang, and “The Facts of Life” and such game shows as “The Wizard of Odds” and “The Joker’s Wild.”

Thicke wrote the humor books, “How To Raise Kids Who Won’t Hate You” and “How Men Have Babies: The Pregnant Father’s Survival Guide.” He also wrote the “Boomer Humor” column for the website The Huffington Post.

Several entertainment and sports figures took to Twitter to share their condolences.

“America loved Alan Thicke,” talk show host Ellen DeGeneres tweeted. “I’m so sad he’s gone. Sending so much love to his family.”

Fellow Canadian actor Jason Priestley tweeted “Shocked and sad to hear about the passing of my old friend @Alan_Thicke. He was one of the good guys in Hollywood. We’ll miss u on the ice!”

“Fuller House” star Candace Cameron Bure tweeted “I’m sad beyond words that Alan Thicke has passed away. I’ve known you since I was 8 years old and so glad I had the pleasure of working with you again so recently on `Fuller House.”‘

Cameron Bure’s brother Kirk played Thicke’s son Mike on “Growing Pains.”

Los Angeles Kings President, Business Operations Luc Robitaille tweeted “Alan was a great friend to my wife Stacia and I, a friend to the entire Kings organization, as well as a friend to so many in the hockey world. He will be deeply missed by so, so many.”

Thicke’s survivors include Robin, the Grammy-nominated singer- songwriter best known for the 2013 song “Blurred Lines,” sons Carter and Brennan, his wife Tanya, and grandsons Tyler and Julian.

— City News Service

 

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