David Cassidy, the beloved 1970s teen idol and star of The Partridge Family, has died. He was 67 years old.
“On behalf of the entire Cassidy family, it is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our father, our uncle, and our dear brother, David Cassidy,” his family told People. “David died surrounded by those he loved, with joy in his heart and free from the pain that had gripped him for so long. Thank you for the abundance and support you have shown him these many years.”
Cassidy was rushed to a Florida hospital last week as his health was worsening, TMZ reported. Their sources said he needed a liver transplant, and was also suffering from kidney failure. He was going in and out of consciousness at the time of the report.
In February 2017, Cassidy told PEOPLE he was diagnosed with dementia. He told the magazine that his late mother, actress Evelyn Ward, also struggled with the disease until her death at age 89 in December 2012. His grandfather also had dimentia.
"I was in denial, but a part of me always knew this was coming," Cassidy told PEOPLE at the time. He said of his mother's struggles, "In the end, the only way I knew she recognized me is with one single tear that would drop from her eye every time I walked into the room. … I feared I would end up that way.”
Cassidy decided to stop touring to focus on his health and enjoy life.
“In the end, the only way I knew she recognized me is with one single tear that would drop from her eye every time I walked into the room," Cassidy told PEOPLE. "I feared I would end up that way.”
Cassidy was born on April 12, 1950 in New York, New York to the late actor Jack Cassidy and Ward. He was their only child, although Jack Cassidy had three children with his second wife, actress Shirley Jones.
Jack Cassidy helped put his son on the road to stardom, with Cassidy beginning his career on Broadway in 1969. That same year, he moved to Los Angeles, where he began appearing in TV shows.
In 1970, he was cast as Keith Patridge in The Partridge Family, with his stepmother Jones co-starring as his character's mother. He became the lead singer of songs recorded for the series, including the 1970 smash hit "I Think I Love You."
The Patridge Family lasted until 1974, but Cassidy was determined to keep his career in show business alive. In addition to recording solo albums and touring, he continued to act. Four years after the show ended, he earned his only Emmy nomination for a guest appearance on Police Story. He also got his own police drama, David Cassidy - Man Undercover, which ran from 1978 to 1979.
More recent TV appearances included episodes of CSI, Less Than Perfect and Malcolm in the Middle. He also appeared in an indie movie called Forgiven This Gun4hire, which is scheduled for release in May 2018.
Behind the scenes, Cassidy struggled with alcoholism. In 2010, 2013 and 2014, he was arrested on DUI charges. He was arrested again in May 2015 for leaving the scene of a car accident.
Cassidy was married and divorced three times. He is survived by his daughter, Arrow actress Katie Cassidy, whose mother is Sherry Williams.
"There has to be something there," Cassidy said in a 1972 interview with Rolling Stone about the making of a teen idol. They've got to see him on television, or hear him on records, and there's gotta be something there. They can't just manufacture someone and expect him to be big and successful."
Photo Credit: Getty / GAB Archive