Joe Santos, "Rockford Files" and "Sopranos" Star, Dies at 84

Kimberly RipleyLife

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Joe Santos, the actor best known for his role as Lt. Dennis Becker on The Rockford Files, died on Wednesday in Santa Monica of a heart attack. He was 84 years old.

Son Perry Santos shared word of his father's passing with TMZ. He said Joe Santos was placed on life support following his heart attack, but later passed away.

In a career that spanned more than four decades, Joe Santos played a recurring role on The Sopranos for several years. He appeared in the 2015 film Chronic. His first role that served as his big break into acting was in a long-defunct soap opera, The Doctors.

The sidekick of James Garner's Jim Rockford role, Joe Santos played Dennis Becker from 1974 to 1980, receiving an Emmy Award nomination for his role.

In addition to his Rockford Files and Sopranos recurring roles, Joe Santos guest starred on TV shows including Magnum P.I., Hardcastle & McCormick, and Miami Vice.

Kimberly Ripley
Kimberly Ripley is a freelance writer and published author from Portsmouth, New Hampshire. A wife, mom of five and 'Nana' to Lilly and Aiden, she loves cooking for her big family and watching HGTV in her spare time. Kim is guilty of starting way more home design projects than she can finish. Visit her at Twitter and Facebook.