Comedian and actor Redd Foxx, best known as junkman Fred Sanford, died Friday after suffering a heart attack and collapsing on the set of his new television series "The Royal Family," his associates said. He was 69.
Louis Pitman, who was Foxx's accountant for the past two years, said the actor died at 7:45 p.m. at Queen of Angels-Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center.Foxx collapsed on the set of the CBS television series on the Paramount Studios lot at 5555 W. Melrose Avenue in Hollywood shortly after 4 p.m., a Fire Department spokesman said.
Foxx was "unconscious and in extremely critical condition with acute myocardial infarction - a heart attack" when he reached the emergency room, a hospital spokeswoman said.
"I thought he was kidding around," Pitman said. "He just fell over.
"You could be really upset with him, but in the end, there was just something about him that made you happy," Pitman said.
Foxx played Alexander Royal in the new sitcom about a retired couple who suddenly take in their daughter and her three children. Della Reese co-starred as Victoria Royal.
Foxx, whose real name was John Elroy Sanford, was best known as the cantankerous junkman Fred Sanford in "Sanford and Son," which aired from 1972 to 1978. In that series, he frequently clutched his chest, raised his eyes and said, "Elizabeth, I coming to join you."
He was born in St. Louis, Mo., Dec. 9, 1922, and ran away from home at the age of 13 to join a street-corner band.
By the 1940s, he was performing as a nightclub comedian. His risque material kept him off television for years.
He broke in to television in the 1960s with guest appearances on "The Lucy Show," "Green Acres," "The Addams Family" and "Mr. Ed," among others.