Todd Bridges remembers his friend and “Diff'rent Strokes" co-star Dana Plato on what would have been her 55th birthday with a heartfelt tribute.
It has been 20 years since the world said goodbye to actress Dana Plato, but her loved ones still remember her fondly, one of which is her “Diff'rent Strokes" co-star Todd Bridges
Actor Todd Bridges poses for photographers at the Urban Health Institutes second annual celebrity poker championship held at the Playboy Mansion | Photo: Getty Images
Todd, who is the last surviving star of the 1980s sitcom "Diff'rent Strokes," shared a picture of Dana with the caption:
'You were the one person I could always talk to. You were one of my best friends. I will never forget you and love you forever. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Dana Plato R.I.P, you are free, my friend.'
Todd shared a second tribute, which featured Dana and Gary Coleman posing for a photo. While Dana died in 1999 from an overdose of prescription drugs, Gary died in 2010 due to a subdural hematoma.
Todd paid his respects to his late friends, stating:
'Rip Dana and Gary. I love you guys forever.'
that Todd, Gary, and Dana became household names after they appeared on NBC's "Diff'rent Strokes."
The show focused on Arnold and Willis Jackson, two black inner-city youths who were taken in by a rich white widower, Phillip Drummond, and his daughter, Kimberly. Although the show had an unbeaten eight-year run, the trio experienced difficulties after it ended in 1985.
Todd Bridges poses in front of the green screen before a taping of Former Child Star Week on Hollywood Squares at CBS Studios | Photo: Getty Images
Dana's life took the worst hit as she developed a drug abuse problem and got eventually arrested in 1991 for robbing a video store at gunpoint.
After her death, which a judge ruled as suicide, Todd revealed that he encouraged her to go to rehab during her drug struggles. However, she didn't answer.
Actor Todd Bridges attends the 8th Annual TV Land Awards at Sony Studios | Photo: Getty Images
Three years after the end of "Diff'rent Strokes," the actor was reportedly using and selling drugs as an attempt to numb himself from the memory of being molested by his former publicist.
Meanwhile, E! Onlinerecalls
that Gary, who passed away in May 2010, died two days after suffering a head injury in a fall down the stairs at his home in Utah.
Before his death, the actor engaged in a court battle against his adoptive parents, whom he claimed mismanaged his earnings.
Actor Todd Bridges arrives to the "First-Ever" BET Comedy Awards at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium | Photo: Getty Images
The 42-year-old eventually won a $1.3 million judgment, but that didn't make his life any better, especially after the end of the show.
Irrespective of the battles Gary, Todd, and Dana faced behind-the-scenes, they remained close friends who helped each other as best as they could.