- Category : Entertainment-Actor-Actress
- Type : GE
- Profile : 3/5 - Martyr / Heretic
- Definition : Triple Split
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Explanation 4
American movie and TV actor, who appeared in 80 films, versatile enough to portray everything from a homicidal maniac to a burly military man to a kindly parent. With credits in comedies, dramas and westerns, he was perhaps best known for the role of bachelor guardian Uncle Bill in TV's "Family Affair" which ran from 1966-1971. He launched his own comedy series, "The Brian Keith Show," in the '70s. He also appeared in "Hardcastle and McCormick," from 1983-1986, and "Pursuit of Happiness," 1987-1988.
The son of actor parents, his introduction to show business was at age three but he did not make his adult debut until 1953. His last TV series was in a 1996 miniseries called "Rough Riders."
Refreshingly blunt, he stuck to his guns when he disagreed with big studio executives and if a script was poor, he did not hesitate to call it "tripe." He preferred his characters to be realistic, and portrayed them with realism. His gruffness was blended with a hint of tenderness that made him endearing. Continuing to work into his 70's, he earned warm reviews in 1994 for playing in a detective adventure.
Keith was a Marine tail gunner in the Pacific during WW II.
His first marriage produced two kids, Mimi and Michael, and his wife, Judy, lost a young son in 1963. He married a second time, to Victoria Young for the remainder of his lifetime, a native Hawaiian who appeared with him in some of his TV series. Their marriage produced son Bobby and daughter, Daisy, who was his pride and joy.
On 4/17/1997, Daisy, distraught over personal problems, killed herself by gunshot. This plunged Keith into a deep depression, further enhanced by the news in May 1997 that his lung cancer had spread into his adrenal glands. Though he had stopped smoking a decade before, Keith had been suffering with emphysema and lung cancer, receiving grueling chemotherapy treatments, almost bedridden with oxygen and a live-in nurse in attendance.
His days spent in bed, in a haze of medications, TV news and old westerns, he committed suicide in the same way as Daisy - a self-inflicted gunshot - and was found dead in his Malibu home on 6/24/1997, two days before Daisy's 28th birthday.