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Actor who portrayed agent Reuben Kinkaid dies at 82

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This 1970 photo released by courtesy of Sony Pictures Television shows, back row, from left, cast members, Shirley Jones, Dave Madden, David Cassidy, Susan Dey, and front row, from left, Brian Forster, Danny Bonaduce and Suzanne Crough of the television series,

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This 1970 photo released by courtesy of Sony Pictures Television shows, back row, from left, cast members, Shirley Jones, Dave Madden, David Cassidy, Susan Dey, and front row, from left, Brian Forster, Danny Bonaduce and Suzanne Crough of the television series, "The Partridge Family." Madden, who played the child-hating agent on the hit 1970s sitcom, died in Florida on Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014, at age 82. (AP Photo/Copyright CPT Holdings Inc, Courtesy Sony Pictures Television)

NEW YORK -- Comic actor Dave Madden, who played the child-hating agent on the hit 1970s sitcom The Partridge Family, died in Florida on Thursday at age 82.

Madden died at a hospice centre near his home in the Jacksonville area, his niece Mary Frances Miller said.

Towering and rumpled, Madden was best known for his television role as Reuben Kinkaid, who managed the Partridge family band and regularly clashed with its impish pre-teen bassist, played by Danny Bonaduce.

While the series starred Shirley Jones, with her real-life stepson David Cassidy as the resident heartthrob, it was Madden and the freckle-faced Bonaduce who became the reigning comic duo.

Jones said Madden "made the show, I felt."

"His relationship with Danny Bonaduce is what made the show work: this strange, mad little boy and the grown man who was even worse as a father figure," she said Thursday. "It was hysterical!"

But though Madden played a guy bedeviled by the youngsters who surrounded him, Jones said that off-camera he "loved kids," and Bonaduce once wrote how during his troubled youth Madden served as his surrogate father.

Madden was born in Sarnia, Ont., and grew up in North Terre Haute, Ind. He began show business as a nightclub comic and then landed his first acting job on the short-lived sitcom Camp Runamuck in the mid-1960s. Before The Partridge Family, Madden was part of the ensemble on the Laugh-In comedy series. He later had a recurring role as one of the customers at Mel's Diner on the long-running sitcom Alice and guested on series such as The Love Boat and Happy Days.

Survivors include his wife, a daughter and a son.

 

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 18, 2014 G2

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