LOS ANGELES – Alan Sues, the actor best known as a flamboyantly campy regular on “Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In” in the late 1960s and early ’70s, has died. He was 85.
Sues died Thursday at his home in West Hollywood, said Michael Gregg Michaud, a longtime friend.
“He had been in failing health the last couple of years, but it was nothing you could put your finger on; just old age,” said Michaud.
As a cast member of “Laugh-In,” Sues joined performers including Judy Carne, Goldie Hawn, Ruth Buzzi, Jo Anne Worley, Arte Johnson and Henry Gibson in the weekly hour of fast-paced comedy.
During his time on the show from 1968 to 1972, Sues played the recurring characters Big Al, the effeminate sportscaster, and Uncle Al the Kiddies’ Pal, the perpetually hung-over children’s show host.
Michaud said Sues was gay but not publicly because he feared it would ruin his career.
“He had a ton of gay fans,” said Michaud. “They all said he was one of the very few gay sort of characters that they saw on television at that time. They identified with him, and they were thankful. As he got older, it meant more to him and he was appreciative of that.”