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Benji Gregory and ALF | Source: Warner Bros. Television Studios
Benji Gregory and ALF | Source: Warner Bros. Television Studios

'ALF' Star Benji Gregory Found Dead in Parking Lot at 46: Uncovering More Details

Taitirwa Sehliselwe Murape
Jul 11, 2024
05:10 A.M.

Actor Benji Gregory has been found dead in a parking lot. He was 46 at the time of his demise. Details about his death have been shared, which include statements from family members and loved ones.

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"ALF" star Benji Gregory has passed away at 46 years old. A statement from his sister, Rebecca Hertzberg-Pfaffinger, reveals that, tragically, the beloved actor was found dead in his car which was in a bank parking lot, on June 13, as a result of what she and her family believe to be heatstroke.

"It is with a heavy heart my family has suffered a loss way too early. Ben was a great Son, Brother and Uncle. He was fun to be around and made us laugh quite often. Still, going through his things, I find myself laughing at little videos or notes of his, in between crying," her statement disclosed.

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"My brother Ben was found in his car, along with his beloved service dog Hans, deceased [...] We believe he went there the evening of the 12th to deposit some residuals. (Found in his car) and never got out of the car to do so. He fell asleep and died from vehicular heatstroke," she added.

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Reportedly, the location where Gregory passed away is believed to be a Chase Bank ATM in Peoria, Arizona. However, the exact ATM location is unknown, as there are seven Chase ATMs/branches in Peoria—El Mirage and Vistancia, Bell Rd and 77th Ave, Beardsley and 83rd Ave, Thunderbird and 83rd Ave, Walk Up-110929, Peoria and 99th and Happy Valley and Lake Pleasant Rd.

Best known for being the youngest cast member on "ALF," Gregory began his illustrious career as a child star, making his first show business debut at just 13 months old on "Fantasy Island." However, after "ALF" had wrapped, the late entertainer stated that he had no interest in sustaining a TV career.

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However, Gregory's time on "ALF" was filled with pleasant experiences. Before his passing, he recalled fun moments when he would climb under the set's stage and playfully mess around with the staff. "The only times it felt like work was when the lights were on and it was real hot," Gregory reflected.

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The young boy also made friends with his cast members like his TV sister, Andrea Elson, who recalls how, despite being a star, Gregory was a "normal kid," who "wanted to get home to go skateboarding."

While his interest in acting fizzled after "ALF," Gregory did work on a few cartoon projects, where he performed voice-over work. However, he clarified, "I wasn't actively trying to act anymore."

Andrea Elson, Benji Gregory and Anne Schedeen at the 13th Annual People's Choice Awards in Los Angeles, California on March 15, 1987 | Source: Getty Images

Andrea Elson, Benji Gregory and Anne Schedeen at the 13th Annual People's Choice Awards in Los Angeles, California on March 15, 1987 | Source: Getty Images

When he was 22, he enrolled as a sophomore film major at the Academy of Art College in San Francisco, where he lived in a house with three roommates. It was at the Academy of Art College where the late actor met his girlfriend, Sarah Hall, who later became his wife.

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At this time, Gregory was able to afford his rent and lifestyle with the money he had earned from "ALF." "I can pay my rent easily—most of the money is still in the bank—and I never get butterflies in my stomach when I have to talk in front of the class," Gregory shared.

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Interestingly, while Gregory did not want to make a return to acting, he did desire to get back into the entertainment industry, although he was not entirely sure of the position he wanted to pursue. He explored various careers before settling in Arizona with his wife, Hall.

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In addition to Gregory's sister, other family members and loved ones have spoken out about their grief. The former child star's cousin, Camille Jazzy Jenkins, posted a heart-wrenching message on Facebook.

"Oh how I never imagined having to share this news. In complete sadness and shock our family has lost one of the most beloved and wonderful men in our small circle. My cousin Benjamin Hertzberg...professionally known as Benji Gregory transitioned [...] from his earthly presence on June 13th," she began.

"He as well as his loving service dog Hanz passed from heat exhaustion. It has taken some time to process and come to terms with our loss. We are not okay.. but take comfort knowing he is with his grandmothers. Please keep his sister, brother and parents in prayer 🙏 I love you Ben... ❤️," Jenkins concluded.

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Adam Casto, a close friend of Benji Gregory's, also posted a statement about the actor's demise. "I just found out my dear friend Benji Gregory. He has passed away. I'm gutted. Seriously… I don't want to believe it," he wrote.

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A past interview from 2021 reveals that Casto's beloved friend had a health condition which could possibly give insight into why he passed out in his car.

Speaking with Tommy Kovac on his "Splat From The Past" show, Gregory, who also served in the Navy for a couple of years, revealed, "I had a pretty good job and uh, I used to work, you know, like all night, which is really good for me because I'm—I have really bad insomnia anyways."

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Divulging about his experience in the Navy as an aerographer's mate further, the late star mentioned, "And then they moved me [...] to the kitchen, which totally sucked and it just totally threw me off, and I—I actually ended up like missing a bunch of days because I couldn't, I just couldn't get out of bed [...] I got out for some medical reasons."

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Aside from what Gregory revealed about his health, his sister, Hertzberg-Pfaffinger, disclosed that he also suffered from bipolar disorder and depression.

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Gregory, who leaves behind a great legacy, which includes both his acting career and time served in the Navy, is deeply missed by all the lives he touched. Apart from the heartbreaking tributes and statements shared by his family and friends, fans have also shared their sorrow and condolences upon first hearing about the tragic news.

Fan comment about Benji Gregory's death in Peoria, Arizona, posted in July 2024 | Source: Facebook/TMZ

Fan comment about Benji Gregory's death in Peoria, Arizona, posted in July 2024 | Source: Facebook/TMZ

Of his passing, one person said, "Very very sad..may he rest in peace," while another commented, "Wow. Way too young." Messages of sympathy and memories of Gregory's role on "ALF" poured in, highlighting the lasting impact he had on viewers.

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"That makes me so sad," echoed a fan, while someone else stated, "SO SAD RIP THOUGHTS WITH FAMILY FRIENDS 🙏🙏🙏💔." Another netizen expressed sadness with, "Omg I watch ALF every week. RIP, [sic]." An admirer noted, "So sad! RIP. That show was one of my faves."

Hertzberg-Pfaffinger shared the family's deep gratitude for the support they've received. She also suggested that fans, who feel inclined, donate in her brother's name to The Actors Equity Foundation or the ASPCA—causes he deeply cared about.

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