One of my favorite television dads has died.

alan-thickeAlan Thicke, known affectionately to many as Dr. Jason Seaver on “Growing Pains,” passed away sometime Dec. 13.

But there was initial confusion regarding the reports of his death. As it turns out, he was the target of a celebrity death hoax.

Reports from tabloids claimed falsely that Thicke had passed Dec. 12, so when he died Dec. 13, the initial reports were dismissed by fans. But then national news stations started confirming the actor’s death.

Thicke was 69. He was born in 1947 in Ontario, Canada. His death was confirmed by his publicist to CBS News.

CNN reported shortly afterward that a publicist for Thicke’s son, Robin Thicke, also had confirmed his death due to a heart attack.

Alan Thicke starred in “Growing Pains” from 1985 until 1992.

As a child of the 1980s, I can recall the sitcom being one of the few that were parent approved.

The show tackled topics that pertained to teenagers and parents who are trying their best to make things work while working full time.

Seaver was the dad everyone in my generation wanted — we tended to romanticize when we felt like we were being “parented” and treated unfairly.

His career was not limited to “Growing Pains.” He began his on-screen work while still living in Canada.

Thicke also was a musician whose music was featured in “Diff’rent Strokes” and “The Facts of Life.” His talent even was featured on an episode of “How I Met Your Mother,” in which he sang a parody of the Crash Test Dummies song “Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm.”

In recent years, Thicke acted in many different shows and television movies. Most of them featured him in brief cameos, such as on the Netflix series “Fuller House.”

He’s survived by his three sons, including singer Robin, Brennan and Carter, as well as his wife, Tanya.

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