Adam Rich, a former child actor best known for starring as Nicholas Bradford on the ABC series “Eight Is Enough,” died Saturday, according to the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner. He was 54.

No further details about Rich’s death are available at this time, though reports state that law enforcement has not indicated to signs of foul play.

Rich spent five seasons portraying Nicholas Bradford, the youngest of eight children on “Eight Is Enough.” The hit series cemented Rich in the cultural zeitgeist during the late ’70s, with the child star’s signature pageboy haircut becoming a widely-replicated phenomenon.

“I’m grateful for the joy felt while working on ‘Eight’!…,” Rich said in a video interview he posted to Instagram in 2021. “I do hope it may have brought you some joy as well.”

Adam Rich on the first season of “Eight Is Enough”
Courtesy Everett Collection

During the show’s run from 1977 to 1981, Rich was a two-time winner and three-time nominee at the Young Artists Awards. Rich received recognition in the category of best juvenile actor in a TV series or special in 1980. He was presented with an award for best young actor in a television series in 1981.

Still in his youth, Rich went on to secure a recurring role as aspiring firefighter Danny Blake in ABC’s “Code Red,” resulting in his nomination for best young actor in a drama series at the 1983 Young Artist Awards. Shortly after, Rich starred in “CBS Children’s Mystery Theatre,” a five-episode anthology series for which he also won a Young Artist Award in the category of best young actor in a television special.

Rich was also a voice-actor on the 1983 “Dungeons & Dragons” series and made appearances in shows like “Fantasy Island,” “CHiPs,” “St. Elsewhere,” “Silver Spoons,” “Small Wonder,” “Baywatch” and “Reel Comedy,” his final project in 2003.

Born Oct. 12, 1968, Rich grew up in the L.A. neighborhood of Granada Hills, though he didn’t begin to pursue acting seriously until high school. Rich debuted on-screen with a minor role on the 1976 series “The Six Million Dollar Man.”

Throughout his career, Rich struggled with substance abuse, leading to a near-death experience from a Valium overdose in 1989. He was arrested two years later for breaking and entering into a pharmacy, though he was bailed out by “Eight Is Enough” co-star Dick Van Patten. Rich then spent three years in rehab before being arrested again in 2002 for driving under the influence.

Details have yet to be released in regard to Rich’s survivors or plans for a memorial service.

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