Dave Madden, an actor who played the child-hating agent on the hit 1970s sitcom “The Partridge Family,” died Jan. 16 at a hospice near Jacksonville, Fla. He was 82.
His niece Mary Frances Miller confirmed the death. The cause was congestive heart failure and kidney failure, the trade paper Variety reported.
Towering and rumpled, Mr. Madden was best known for his role as Reuben Kinkaid, who managed the Partridge family band and regularly clashed with its impish preteen bassist, played by Danny Bonaduce.
While the ABC series starred Shirley Jones, with her real-life stepson, David Cassidy, as the resident heartthrob, it was Mr. Madden and the freckle-faced Bonaduce who became the reigning comic duo.
Jones said Mr. Madden “made the show, I felt.”
“His relationship with Danny Bonaduce is what made the show work,” she said. “This strange, mad little boy and the grown man who was even worse as a father figure.”
Before “The Partridge Family,” Mr. Madden was part of the ensemble on the “Laugh-In” comedy series, sipping and sometimes spitting milk along with joining in the show’s zany sketches and crazy jokes. He later had a recurring role as one of the customers at Mel’s Diner on the long-running sitcom “Alice.”
Mr. Madden was born in Ontario 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.
He also appeared on such series as “Bewitched,” “Barney Miller,” “Happy Days,” “The Love Boat” and “Fantasy Island.”
In 2007 he published a memoir, “Reuben on Wry.”
Survivors include his wife and two children.