It is always sad when a memory from your formative years passes on. We think of television characters as familiar friends because they came into our living rooms once a week. Unfortunately, another television icon of the seventies has now gone on into eternity. Ron Pallillo , also known as the nerdy” sweathog ,” Arnold Horshack died this morning in Florida.
Arnold was a bit of an outcast, he was the nerd among a bunch of cool hooligans. But this was just one part of Ron’s life. Ron was born in Cheshire Connecticut on April 2, 1949. He took an interest in theatre early in life. Ron’s father has passed away when he was a child which caused him to develop a stuttering problem. His mother enrolled him in classes where he cultivated his passion for theatre. Ron was only fourteen when he formed his own summer theatre in Cheshire. From there he went on to enroll at the University of Connecticut to major in drama. After college, Ron toured with a company and performed many Shakespearean roles. After theatre, Ron got the break of his career by landing the role of Arnold Horshack on “Welcome Back Kotter.” Along with future superstar John Travolta , Pallillo became a star. Other guest roles were soon to follow like “Murder She Wrote” , “Cagney and Lacey” and the mainstay of the time period “The Love Boat” He had also had a recurring role on the late ABC soap “One Life to Live” In later years, he did a lot of talk shows reminiscing about his days as “Horshack” . Palillo leaves behind two brothers, Robert and Richard , and one sister , Ann. He also leaves his longtime companion , Joseph, of forty one years. Ron we would like to say thanks for the laughter and say hi to Epstein for us.