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Ron Palillo

Ron Palillo, who portrayed classroom goofball Arnold Horshack on the 1970s TV series "Welcome Back, Kotter," died at his home in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., early Tuesday morning, apparently of a heart attack. He was 63.

Mr. Palillo had been teaching acting classes at G-Star School of the Arts, a charter school in Palm Springs, for about three years.

Starring Gabe Kaplan and featuring a hit theme song by John Sebastian, "Welcome Back, Kotter" originally aired on ABC and ran from 1975-79.

Mr. Palillo's character belonged to an unruly group of high school students known as the Sweathogs, a group that included John Travolta as lady's man Vinnie Barbarino, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs as the always cool Freddie "Boom-Boom" Washington and Robert Hegyes as tough Jewish Puerto Rican wheeler-dealer Juan Epstein. Hegyes died in January of an apparent heart attack. He was 60.

Mr. Palillo is survived by his partner of 41 years, Joseph Gramm, a retired actor.



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