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May-29-2010 12:42printcomments

Gary Coleman (A Different Strokes Memorial) R.I.P.

What you talkin' about Willis?

Gary Coleman
Courtesy: hepioneerwoman.com

(LOS ANGELES) - Good luck finding someone in the USA who lived in the 70's and 80's, who isn't familiar with Gary Coleman. He was a child star who had a very hard time emerging from that role as an adult.

Gary Coleman was adopted as an infant and had three different surgeries for his kidney condition before he was five years old.

He earned roughly $18 million during his time on "Diff'rent Strokes". His parents created a trust fund but paid themselves out of it.

The trust was dissolved when Coleman was 18 years old, it left $770 thousand for his parents, and only $220 for him, it was a shocking revelation. He sued his parents, and received over a million dollars, but never recovered from financial strife.

He had to become a security guard to pay his bills, and only recently had been reengaging the world of acting.

He watched a fellow star from the show that made them famous wither and die, and another sink into the fray of lawlessness, both hopelessly addicted to the things on the streets that kill people.

Forever an icon, this is a sad Hollywood story.

Gary Coleman (A Different Strokes Memorial) R.I.P.

Is it remotely possible to make millions of viewers glad,
Watching your show while your personal life is so sad,
Not so much the kidney problems although that’s bad,
But the millions earned stolen by your own mom & dad.

I can see an agent/manager taking everything you’re worth,
But the father who helped conceive & mom who gave birth?
Maybe there was a possibility of a behind the scenes curse,
As the very lovely young and talented Dana Plato went first.

Yo! I spoke to soon Gary’s adoptive parents milked him dry,
Okay, I guess that makes it all right and there’s no need to cry,
Well, whatever the case and no matter who they were or are,
Only God should him change from a shinning to a falling star.

Forget not Todd Bridges beaten by dad after he’d rehearse,
But, that abuse was only after mom had her butt beat first,
Mucho Denaro, several years top 10 rated shows that’s all,
So how come after the success it’s security in an area mall?

Oh, there was a brief stint in the now popular reality shows,
Where you’re cooped up with other fallen stars you know,
From the penthouse to the outhouse, too high now so low,
Hollywood, all he did and no place in the business to go?

Sadly this is the normal winding road for kids like this,
Bending over for a kick, instead of a handshake or kiss,
Your entire life of 42 years before you could finally be,
Prayerfully at ease without those sarcastic jokes, R.I.P.

by Luke Easter


Luke Easter is a poet who writes about things that are very close to the heart of Salem-News.com. Another former U.S. Marine, Luke explained what drives him to try to heal the world with an approach that reaches people on a different level, one known for centuries, yet too often forgotten in the one we live in.

We live in a world of social & economic injustice. The main reason for founding America in the first place was to relieve the oppression of the King of England. Patrick Henry said it best, “give me liberty or give me death.” And yet, all too often death seems to be the only way out. Why is there such a high suicide rate especially among teens, in the land of the free & the home of the brave? What makes headlines? Good news? Ha! More depressing stories than anything else. I feel poetry takes an edge off the hurt of bad news while still delivering it but in a, “glitzy” sort of way. Giving a different perspective. Kind of like slap in the face as opposed to a knife in the back. At least with the slap you’ll live to see another day and you will know whom it’s from. I wasn’t here for the beginning of the world but at 59, I just might be here for the end.

Even though it’s still a knife, rhyme poetry helps to dull the blade. And that’s my job. You can write to Luke Easter at: lyricsfromlucas@aol.com

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Samantha May 30, 2010 11:33 pm (Pacific time)

Very nice what Neil Fifer said of Gary in the news over this past weekend. RIP Gary.

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