Raymond Allen, the star of Good Times and Sanford and Son, has died at the age of 91, his daughter Ta Ronce Allen confirmed in a Facebook post on August 10.
Between 1974 and 1977, Allen, a native of Kansas City, Missouri, appeared in as Uncle Woodrow “Woody” Anderson in Sanford and Son and as Ned the Wino in Good Times. According to his IMDb page, Allen had not acted since an appearance in the 1985 TV movie Gus Brown and Midnight Brewster.
Allen’s Daughter Said Her Father Was Diagnosed With a Bacterial Infection in May 2020 but Tested Negative for Coronavirus
Ta Ronce Allen wrote, “Just wanted to let The Allen Family and friends know that Dad received his wing two hours ago. His warmth, kind heart and cleaver sayings will be missed. His laughter will ring in heaven. Rest In Heavenly Peace Raymond Allen. The last of 12 siblings.” In a follow-up Facebook post, she said her cousin, her father’s niece, had also passed away on the same day.
In May 2020, Ta Ronce Allen said in a Facebook post that her father had been diagnosed with a bacterial infection but had tested negative for COVID-19. She said her father was being treated at St. Francis Hospital in Lynnwood, California. She added, “He is one strong 91-year-old.”
Variety reported that Allen was found unresponsive the morning of August 10 at the California health care facility where he had lived since a 2016 bout with pneumonia. TMZ reported that medics were unable to revive him.
He is also survived by daughter Brenda Allen, according to Variety.
Allen Was Forced to Retire From Acting Due to Health Issues
During his career, Allen made multiple appearances in Starsky and Hutch, The Love Boat, The Jeffersons and What’s Happening? Allen’s IMDb page said he made his debut in the 1946 movie, Fight That Ghost in 1946. He did not make another on-screen appearance until 1973, when he appeared in the movie Mean Mother. He also appeared that year in the documentary Wattstax, about an all-day concert at the 1972 Watts Summer Festival featuring performances by Stax Records artists including Isaac Hayes, Rufus Thomas and The Staples Singers.
Various online profiles for Allen say he was forced to retire from acting in the 1980s due to undisclosed health issues. In 2016, his daughter said in a Facebook post that Allen was receiving longterm care at a facility and that his memory was failing.
Allen’s daughter, Ta Ronce Allen, made multiple appearances on Good Times between 1976 and 1977.
Allen Was a World War II Veteran
On his Facebook page, Allen said he had been widowed since January 2017. Allen said on his page that he lived in Lancaster, California. According to a post from his daughter, Allen served in the U.S. Navy during World War II.
Allen’s character description on the official Sanford and Son Fandom page describes Woodrow “Woody” Anderson as “generally a good-natured soul” who would at times “hit the bottle” due to his “domineering” wife Esther. The page adds that in Woody’s first appearance on the show, he was played by a different actor named DeForest Covan.