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Inside the Life of Danny Bonaduce after ‘The Partridge Family’

Edduin Carvajal
Sep 07, 2019
11:00 A.M.
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Danny Bonaduce, the former child actor best known as Danny Partridge on “The Partridge Family” and his reality show “Breaking Bonaduce,” has had a life filled with ups and downs.


Born on August 13, 1959, Danny grew up in a dysfunctional family and suffered physical and emotional abuse from his father, former TV writer and producer Joseph Bonaduce.


Danny Bonaduce’s time on “The Partridge Family”

Things improved for him in September 1970, though, as he started working on "The Partridge Family." In the show, he portrayed bass guitar player named Danny until its cancelation in 1974.

Unfortunately, his time in the entertainment industry was not a successful as he would have liked to, and he opened up about it in a 2013 interview on “Oprah: Where Are They Now.”


In it, he admitted to living on the streets for a while soon after his time on “The Partridge Family” ended. The former child star confessed to having struggled with drug and alcohol abuse, too.

Despite living behind a dumpster, he was still famous, so people would often come by and ask for pictures and autographs without knowing that he was homeless.


His arrests

In 1990, Danny was arrested after he was caught trying to buy cocaine in Florida soon after hosting an anti-drug campaign for children.

One year later, he was arrested again for beating and robbing a transvestite prostitute in Phoenix. After pleading guilty to reduced charges, Danny was forced to pay for the victim’s medical bills.


His mother helped him get his life back on track

The actor decided to get his life back on track when his mother visited him at a motel he was staying at. Once there, she told him the most difficult yet powerful words that a mother could say:

“I think you’re gonna die very soon, and I wanted to make sure that I knew that I told you I loved you before I get the phone call that you are dead.”

Soon after that, he moved back in with his mother and started controlling his drug and alcohol addiction, and things started getting better.


Working on TV after “The Partridge Family”

From 2001 and 2003, Danny co-hosted "The Other Half" next to Mario Lopez, Dick Clark, and Dr. Jan Adams. Two years later, VH1 made a reality show of him titled "Breaking Bonaduce."

The series addressed his complicated relationship with his then-wife Gretchen Hillmer. Unfortunately, it was canceled in December 2006 only after two seasons. With Gretchen, Danny has two children, Isabella and Dante.


In 2007, Danny started working as a host and judge on “I Know My Kid’s a Star,” another VH1 show that featured parents and children trying to be part of the entertainment business.


His work in radio

While most people know Danny as a TV personality, he is also an important name in radio.

His career in radio started in the late 80s and, between 1994 and 1996, he even hosted his own show. So far, he has worked in radio stations in Detroit, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Seattle.


His career as a boxer and wrestler

Apart from his time in the entertainment industry, Danny embarked in the boxing and wrestling world, too, mainly for charity events.

So far, he has fought and won against “Brady Bunch” stars Barry Williams and Christopher Knight, teen idol Donny Osmond, and stand-up comedian Bob Levy.

Danny also fought former MLB player Jose Canseco, but the fight ended up as a draw. The only match he has lost was against Eric Young, who is currently signed to WWE.


His work as a writer

The actor also wrote a memoir titled “Random Acts of Badness: My Story.” In it, he wrote about different aspects of his life, even the darkest ones:

“He recounts his life after cancellation and the quick slide from star to tabloid fodder; the numerous ways he medicated himself against the hurt and disappointment; and bottoming out financially and emotionally and even, briefly, criminally,” reads the description of his book.


At the moment, Danny is married to Amy Railsback, who he met at a Starbucks in Los Angeles in 2007.

Amy, 23 years younger than the actor, was a substitute school teacher and now manages her husband’s career.

Nowadays, he is focused on his family while performing in shows as a singer and working on radio, as described in his Instagram profile.

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