The popular Hungarian/Puerto Rican comic was starring with Jack Albertson on the hit NBC comedy series “Chico and the Man.” Battling susbstance abuse and severely depressed after the collapse of his marriage, Prinze put a pistol to his temple in front of his manager and pulled the trigger on Jan. 28, 1977. He was rushed to the hospital with a massive head wound, but was taken off of life support the following day. He was 22.
A reworked version of the series, “Chico,” began that fall with Albertson and Gabriel Melgar as a young boy named Raul joining Albertson. The series was history by 1978.
The affable, handsome actor was starring with Ben Murphy in the lighthearted “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid”-style ABC western “Alias Smith and Jones," which began in January 1971 as a midseason replacement. Duel was just 31 when on Dec. 31, 1971, he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. Roger Davis, who was providing the opening and closing narration, was chosen to replace Duel. The series continued through January 1973.
Among other regulars who died during production were Nancy Marchand (“The Sopranos”); Alice Pearce and Marion Lorne (“Bewitched”); Redd Foxx (“The Royal Family”); John Spencer (“The West Wing”); Michael Conrad (“Hill Street Blues”); Jerry Orbach (“Law & Order”); Jack Soo (“Barney Miller”); Bea Benadaret and Smiley Burnett (“Petticoat Junction"); Will Geer (“The Waltons”); Diana Hyland (“Eight Is Enough”); Florence Halop and Selma Diamond (“Night Court"), and Will Lee (“Sesame Street”).