He was born on February 4, 1923 in Lethbridge, Alberta. Bain first appeared on regular television when he played a stuffy next-door neighbor Dr. Arthur Harmon on the show Maude from 1974-1978. Then he had his iconic role as Mr. Drummond on Diff’rent Strokes, which ran from 1978-1986. Bain’s Phillip Drummond was the regular straight man to the wisecracking Arnold (Gary Coleman).
According to the L.A. Times, Bain was uncomfortable talking about the various personal tragedies that had befallen his three “Diff’rent Strokes” co-stars: Coleman, Dana Plato and Todd Bridges.
(Coleman, who was constantly in the tabloids for legal and health issues, died after a brain hemorrhage in 2010. Plato died in 1999 after an apparent drug overdose. Bridges, the sole surviving member of the trio, would later say that sexual abuse in his childhood drove him into a spiral of drug addiction; in 2012, he supported California legislation he hoped would protect child actors from sexual predators.)
His last regular role was as presidential aide Charley Ross on the George C. Scott show Mr. President in 1987. His last television appearance was on the series finale of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.
Conrad Bain is survived by his daughter Jennifer, and sons Mark and Kent.
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