|Born||Alton Adelbert Powers
July 5, 1950
Bedford–Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York City, New York, U.S.
|Died||April 6, 2015
New Bedford, Massachusetts, U.S.
|Cause of death||Liver Cancer|
|Other names||Ben A. Powers|
|Education||Rhode Island School of Design|
|Known for||Keith Anderson – Good Times|
|Spouse(s)||Julia Harper (m. 1981–2012) (her death)|
Alton Adelbert Powers (July 5, 1950 – April 6, 2015), known professionally as Ben Powers was an American actor. Powers was best known for his role as Thelma Evans's (portrayed by Bern Nadette Stanis) husband, Keith Albert Anderson, during the sixth and final season of the CBS sitcom Good Times (1978–79). Powers was also a cast member on the NBC television comedy series Laugh-In in 1977. Powers died on April 6, 2015 at age 64 due to liver cancer.
Powers was born in Brooklyn, New York and raised in Providence, Rhode Island. He attended the Rhode Island School of Design. Powers got his first break in the 1970s with Adrian Hall, director at Trinity Repertory Theater in Providence, Rhode Island, his hometown. In addition to stage acting, Powers did stand-up comedy, amazing impressions, and sang standards as well as original music he wrote. He was discovered by a Hollywood agent in Providence, signed on to do movies, and entertained at the Playboy clubs in Las Vegas, New York & Boston. After Good Times, Powers guest starred on a number of popular TV dramas and sitcom shows of the 80s including Gimme a Break, Flamingo Road, The Greatest American Hero, The New Odd Couple and Laverne & Shirley. Powers was also a regular on the CBS-TV hit detective drama show Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer in 1984-85, until the star, Stacy Keach, was arrested in London for cocaine smuggling and the show was canceled while Keach did time in England. Powers left the Hollywood scene at the end of 1985, before the detective series was picked up again. In the early 1980s, Powers appeared in a handful of big-screen films which included Cheech & Chong's Next Movie, Things Are Tough All Over and The Man Who Loved Women as well as a number of made-for-TV movies, mostly in smaller supporting roles.
Personal and Death
Powers married Julia Harper (b. 1950 – d. 2012) on May 4, 1981. They would have 4 daughters: Twins Maleah Cameron Powers and Raleah Cameron Powers (b. February 17, 1982); Augusta Valeria Powers, (b. April 20, 1984); and Simone Emerson Powers, (b. August 21, 1988). Powers died of liver cancer on April 6, 2015 at the age of 64 and was cremated.
- The Hollywood Reporter: 'Good Times' Actor Ben Powers Dies at 64
- "Ben Powers Dies: ‘Good Times’ Actor Was 64". Deadline.com. April 18, 2015. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
- Sad News: "Good Times actor Ben Powers passes away at 64"
- Barnes, Mike; Gajewski, Ryan (April 19, 2015). "'Good Times' actor Ben Powers dies at 64". Retrieved April 20, 2015.
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