Alan Thicke easily played one of the most iconic TV dads of all time—all the more so if you were a child of that '80s/'90s bridge when Growing Pains was a prime-time staple.
So the actor's death today—suddenly, of a heart attack, at only 69—has roiled an entire generation, in addition to his many peers in Hollywood who either worked with Thicke or crossed paths with the Canadian-born star, who most recently had a cameo on This Is Us and played a momentary love interest for D.J. Tanner in a humorous plot twist on the second season of Fuller House. (Thicke had also just tweeted his compliments to the Netflix series earlier today.)
"I'm sad beyond words that Alan Thicke has passed away," Candace Cameron Bure, whose brother Kirk Cameron also played Thicke's TV son on Growing Pains, posted on Instagram Tuesday evening. "I've known you since I was 8 years old and so glad I had the pleasure of working with you again so recently on Fuller House. You were a part of my family and hockey family. You will be greatly missed... My heart hurts."
A photo posted by Candace Cameron Bure (@candacecbure) on
"So sad is the passing of Alan Thicke," tweeted Bob Saget. "Such a good husband, father, brother, and friend. He will be deeply missed. Rest in peace dear Alan."
Added Lori Loughlin, "I'm so sad to hear about the passing of Alan Thicke. RIP Alan."
And so the tributes will continue to pour in tonight, kind words so far from his fellow stars of that influential sitcom era, the actors Thicke had influenced over the years, and other entertainers who simply enjoyed spending time with him.