Conrad Bain dies

Jan 16, 2013 by Ian Evans

Conrad Bain, the Canadian-born actor who is best known for roles on Maude and Diff’rent Strokes, has died of natural causes at the age of 89.

Though he earned sitcom fame as Bea Arthur’s conservative neighbor on Maude, he was best known as the rich white father who adopted two underprivileged African-American boys on the series Diff’rent Strokes. The series, which debuted in 1978, frequently tackled the topics of race and class in America.

Born in Lethbridge, Alberta, Bain served in the Canadian Army during WWII. He headed to New York to study at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in 1948 and was a journeyman actor on stage and screen.

He married Monica Sloan in 1945. She passed in 2009. Bain is survived by three children: Jennifer, Kent and Mark.