Alton “Ben” Powers
Alton “Ben” Powers, 64, known best for his role on the iconic sitcom “Good Times,” has passed away, according to his family. Powers died April 6 in New Bedford, Mass. No cause of death has been revealed.
A prolific actor, Powers had roles on shows like, “Gimme a Break,” “Flamingo Road,” “The Greatest American Hero,” “The New Odd Couple,” “Laverne & Shirley” and “Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer.” But, undoubtedly, Powers’ most recognized TV character was that of Keith Anderson, husband to Thelma Evans, played by actress Bern Nadette Stanis in the 1970s CBS series “Good Times,” which focused on a Black family in inner-city Chicago.
As far as movie roles, Powers had roles in the films Cheech & Chong’s Next Movie, Things Are Tough All Over and The Man Who Loved Women.
In addition to acting, Powers did stand-up comedy and impressions, and sang standards as well as original music.
Powers was born in Brooklyn and raised in Providence, R.I., by his grandparents. He attended school at the Rhode Island School of Design for painting and sketching, before he pursued his career in acting.
Powers was finally discovered by a Hollywood agent in Providence. He worked the Playboy club circuit in places like Los Angeles, New York and Boston, which led to a job in 1977 on the revived version of “Laugh-In,” according to CNN.
Survivors include his mother and his sisters Yvonne and Maya.