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David Nelson, “Ozzie and Harriet” Actor, Dies

Nelson Starred in His Parents' Popular TV Show, Died as Last Living Member of Family at 74
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David Nelson, "Ozzie and Harriet" Actor, Dies

David Nelson (AP Photo)

LOS ANGELES (AP) - David Nelson, who starred on his parents’ popular television show “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet,” has died, a family spokesman said. He was 74.

Nelson, who was battling complications of colon cancer, died Tuesday at his Los Angeles home, said family spokesman and longtime Hollywood publicist Dale Olson.

PICTURES: David Nelson

Nelson was the last remaining member of the Nelsons TV family, which included actor/bandleader Ozzie, his singer wife, Harriet Hilliard and his teen idol brother Rick. The show originated on radio in 1952 as “Here Come the Nelsons,” then ran for 320 episodes on TV from 1952 to 1966 as “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet” with some of the story lines taken from the stars’ own lives. David Nelson also directed and produced numerous episodes of the show throughout its run.

Singer Gunnar Nelson, a son of Rick Nelson, issued a statement Wednesday, saying his uncle’s death was “a great loss to the Nelson family.”

“We will all miss Uncle Dave’s laughter and evolved sense of humor,” Gunnar Nelson said.

READ MORE: Singer Gunnar Nelson Mourns Uncle’s Death

“The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet” was shot in the Nelson family home in the Hollywood foothills, which remains a popular attraction for visitors on Hollywood celebrity bus tours.

Born in New York City, David attended Hollywood High School and the University of Southern California.

His film credits included “Peyton Place,” “The Remarkable Mr. Pennypacker,” “The Big Circus,” “Day of the Outlaw,” “30,””The Big Show,” `Love and Kisses and “Swing Out, Sweet Land.” In 1976, he costarred with his mother in “Smash-Up on Interstate 5.”

His television credits included “Up In Smoke,” “The Love Boat,” “High School USA,” and “A Family For Joe.” Directing credits included “O.K. Crackerby,” “Childish Things,” “Easy To Be Free,” “Ozzie’s Girls,” “Death Screams,” “Last Plane Out,” “Goodnight Beantown” and “A Rare Breed.”

READ MORE: David Nelson Honed Directing Skills at an Early Age

Nelson also was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

He is survived by his wife, Yvonne; four sons and a daughter; and seven grandchildren. A service will be held Thursday at Pierce Brothers Westwood Mortuary.

Post originally published at CBSNews.com

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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