LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) Nathaniel Taylor, 80, best known for his role as Rollo Lawson on the ’70s sitcom “Sanford & Son,” died Wednesday at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Las Angeles after a heart attack, his sone Kaedi Taylor told the Associated Press.
Taylor’s character on the show was a sidekick to the “big dummy,” as Red Foxx’s character, Fred Sanford, called his son, Lamont. Fred always thought that Rollo was a bad influence for his son and Rollo didn’t help matters by wearing super-fly outfits and calling Fred “Pops.” Taylor himself went on to perform in shows like “Police Story” and “What’s Happening” and was in Blaxploitation movies like “Dynamite.” He reprised the role of Rollo in the 1980s for the spinoff “Sanford.”
“It was a time and an era — just to be on TV as a black man, it was an honor,” Kaedi Taylor, who works in the television and film industry, told the AP. “It was an honor for people to remember him.”
“He was always there with a wise word and a kind word and a joke to put a little icing on it,” said Alonzo “Lonzo” Williams, a longtime friend and hip-hop promoter.