DIFF’RENT STROKES/NBC/ABC/1978-86 (Short Person)
(Gary Coleman/costar) Gary Coleman, the 10-year old black star of this popular sitcom about two black youths (Arnold and Willis) adopted by a white Park Avenue millionaire after the boy’s mother, a maid for the wealthy family, died.
Coleman was born with a congenital kidney problem. He got a new kidney at the age of five from a Greek boy at Children’s Memorial Hospital.
Each December 18th (date of his first operation) Gary gives a birthday party for his kidney.
Coleman had additional kidney transplants over the years. His smaller stature is attributed to his kidney condition.
Coleman died from a brain hemmohrage in 2010.
See also: Diff’rent Strokes (2)