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Dolph Sweet (July 18, 1920 - May 8, 1985) was an American actor, credited with nearly 60 television and film roles as well as several roles in stage productions before his death from cancer in 1985.

Biography

Born Adolphus Jean Sweet in New York, New York, his father was an auto mechanic and his first ambition was playing football. In 1939, he attended the University of Alabama; however, he was called away from his education for a tour of duty in World War II with the US Army Air Force. In World War II he was shot down over Germanymarker and spent two years as a POW.

After the war, he played semi-pro football and boxed as he worked on a masters degree from Columbia University. He went on to head up the drama department at Barnard Collegemarker. Shortly after, he made his Broadway debut in Rhinoceros which starred Zero Mostel.

His first major film role was in the motion picture The Young Doctors in 1961. He went on to make numerous guest appearances in films and on television through the 1960s, including roles on The Defenders, The Edge of Night and Dark Shadows. In his personal life he had now married and had a son. This marriage would end in divorce before the mid-1970s and he would remarry once more before his passing.

Through the 1970s, he saw a large increase in the demand for his services, landing roles in films such as Colossus: The Forbin Project, The Out-of-Towners, The Lords of Flatbush, The Bad News Bears in Breaking Training, Fear Is the Key, Which Way Is Up? and Heaven Can Wait. In addition to film roles, he also had guest starring roles on Little House on the Prairie and Mrs. Columbo. He had a notable role as FBImarker director J. Edgar Hoover in the 1978 television miniseries King, based on the life of civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr.

He was well known for his role as Gil McGowan on the soap opera Another World (1972-1977).

Living at the time in Canoga Parkmarker, California he was active in the neighborhood, and assisted with voting and voter turnout on election days.

As the 1980s began, Sweet kept on working at a very steady pace landing roles in such films as Reds and had more guest slots on programs such as Hill Street Blues and Hart to Hart.

Gimme a Break! and Death

Sweet is probably best remembered for his role as cantankerous police chief and father Carl Kanisky, who was constantly at odds with housekeeper Nell Carter on the sitcom Gimme a Break!, a role he essayed from 1981 until his death. Sweet was diagnosed with cancer during the series' fourth season, but continued to work. Dolph Sweet died on May 8, 1985. His final appearance on Gimme a Break! aired 3 days later.

He is buried in Glendale, Californiamarker's Grand View Memorial Park Cemetery.

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