December 16, 2016
One More Piece of my Childhood
Kirk Cameron Recalls His Time With Alan Thicke on 'Growing Pains': 'We Were a Real Family'
Source: Jackie Willis, Entertainment Tonight
Kirk Cameron knew immediately upon meeting Alan Thicke at age 14 that he was going to be a "really cool dad" on Growing Pains.
"I remember thinking, 'Wow, this famous Canadian talk show host guy sounds different when he says words like, 'about' and 'aye,' but he's really nice and funny," Cameron told the Today show on Thursday, just two days after Thicke died suddenly from a heart attack at age 69.
Cameron said that even when the cameras weren't rolling, Thicke and his other Growing Pains co-stars operated like a family for those seven seasons. "We were a family," he recalled. "We laughed and cried together, shared birthday celebrations, Christmas parties, holidays and worked together with the crew as a team to make a really special TV show. We weren't just a TV family. In many ways, we were a real family."
The 46-year-old actor -- now a father himself -- remembers Thicke planning reunions after the show ended in 1992. "In an ever-changing world, my friendship with Alan was always a constant," he shared. "Meeting up with Alan, even after years had passed since we'd seen each other -- we'd just pick up the conversation where we'd left off."
Cameron added that his onscreen dad taught him a lot over the years. "Jason Seaver [Thicke's character] on Growing Pains was a man who didn't take himself too seriously, but took his role as a father very seriously," he explained. "Alan was just like that kind of man. Alan knew that time invested in his family, even more than his career, would be one of his greatest legacies."
Cameron's sister, Candace Cameron Bure, also spent some time with Thicke -- who recently guest starred on her Netflix show, Fuller House -- and shared with ET some of those memories. "Alan has just always been that lovable, kind, gracious man -- great father, great friend," she said. "He just always had a smile on his face, always had a joke to say. And he had that very dry sense of humor too. I know that everyone's going to talk about Alan, and I can't imagine that anyone will have anything negative to say about that guy because that's the kind of person he was."
For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven.
A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 NLT
What does today's God's story scripture teach us about losing a loved one?
In the grand sweep of current events, the passing of a sitcom dad from the 80's may not seem like a big deal. Unless you were one of those kids who knew Jason Seaver (Alan Thicke) as a part of your weekly routine. In a year of tragic deaths, this is just one more piece of my childhood that is gone.
After this news yesterday, we received word today that a family member had passed away. Reflecting on all these events, the reminder of Ecclesiastes 3 seems appropriate. Life comes in seasons. Not all those seasons are fun.
How can I apply today's God's story to my life?
When we can remember life comes in seasons, we can appreciate the good times better and endure the hard times with more patience. When we know the good times are temporary, we do not take them for granted. We appreciate and give more to the relationships we have. When the bad times come, knowing they won't last forever can give us courage.
How can I connect today's story, God's story, and my story to others?
2016 has seen it's share of loss. Now is an easy time to have a conversation about how you never know what direction life is going to go. This can be a chance to talk about the gospel, or possibly the importance of valuing the relationships we have today.