'Growing Pains' Star Found Dead After Long Search


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After a nearly two-week-long search, actor Andrew Koenig, who played Boner on the popular 1980s sitcom Growing Pains, was found dead in a Vancouver park on Thursday morning. Koenig, 41, had been missing since Feb. 14 and had allegedly killed himself.

During a "dramatic press conference," his father—actor Walter Koenig, who starred as Pavel Chekov in the original Star Trek TV series—said Andrew "was obviously in a lot of pain." Andrew had rid himself of many possessions and moved out of his Venice, California apartment, which his parents were unaware of at the time, according to CNN. Last week Andrew's family received a letter written in a "despondent tone."

Fans, friends and strangers have offered their sympathy online. Actor William Shatner, who starred as Captain James T. Kirk on "Star Trek" alongside Koenig's father, sent out the following tweet late last night: "My deepest sympathies to Andrew Koenig's family. I will grieve with them." LeVar Burton, who played Geordi La Forge on "Star Trek: The Next Generation," also tweeted that he is "Offering prayers for Walter & Judy Koenig as well as their beloved son, Andrew..." As did Wil Wheaton, who starred alongside Burton as Wesley Crusher: "Oh my god. I just heard that Andrew Koenig's body has been found in Vancouver. He was only 41. My heart goes out to his family."

Koenig has also appeared on the TV shows 21 Jump Street and My Two Dads, acted in an episode of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and played the Joker in the virally popular fan film Batman: Dead End earlier this decade. He also stars in "DaZe: Vol. Too (sic) - NonSeNse," a forthcoming movie which is currently in post production.

Here's a brief clip from "Thank God It's Friday," the 15th episode of the second season of "Growing Pains." In this episode, Koenig's character Boner and his friends struggle with the offer of hard drugs at a party in a classic 1980s sitcom setup:

And here is Koenig in "Long Day's Journey Into the Night," the third episode during season two:

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Niraj Chokshi is a former staff editor at TheAtlantic.com, where he wrote about technology. He is currently freelancing and can be reached through his personal website, NirajC.com. More

Niraj previously reported on the business of the nation's largest law firms for The Recorder, a San Francisco legal newspaper. He has also been published in The Hartford Courant, The Seattle Times and The Age, in Melbourne, Australia. He's also a longtime programmer and sometimes website designer.
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