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Robert Mandan, Star of ’70s Sitcom ‘Soap,’ Dies at 86

Mandan played the wealthy, philandering Chester Tate in primetime’s parody of daytime soap operas

Robert Mandan, who starred as the wealthy, womanizing Chester Tate in the ’70s sitcom “Soap,” has died. He was 86.

Mandan’s friend, screenwriter Gary Goldstein, told TheWrap that the actor passed away April 29 after suffering a long illness.

Mandan was best known for his work on “Soap,” which kicked off Billy Crystal’s career as one of television’s first openly gay characters.

He also appeared in countless other TV shows over his 60-year acting career, including “The Streets of San Francisco,” “Mission: Impossible,” “All in the Family,” “CHiPs,” “Three’s Company,” “Facts of Life” and “ER.”

His feature films include “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas” opposite Burt Reynolds and Dolly Parton, “The MatchMaker” with Janeane Garofalo and “Zapped!” with ’80s teen heartthrobs Scott Baio and Willie Aames.

Mandan is survived by his wife of 55 years, Sherry Dixon.