The Partridge Family was one of the most successful shows to ever follow a musical family. It spawned actual radio hits and had a cast full of lovable characters.
Suzanne Crough was one of these relatable family members. Being able to play Tracy Partridge was her big break and the most memorable feature in her short filmography.
Struggles transitioning out of the “child-actor” phase couldn’t stop her from pursuing her passion. Even when she wasn’t acting, she always hoped for the day she could return to a set. Her life is full of possibility until it is cut short by a sudden medical issue.
Like and subscribe for more on the members of your favorite TV families. Watch our video to learn about the rare condition that killed Suzanne Crough, also known as Tracy from the Partridge family, at 52 years old.
Suzanne Crough died on April 27, 2015, at her home in Laughlin, Nevada at the age of 52. She survives by her husband William, two daughters Samantha and Alexandria, and one granddaughter.
Her cause of death isn’t originally revealed to the public. Fans hang in the dark until the coroner of Clark County, Nevada reveals the details of the rare heart condition she’d been suffering from.
Suzanne’s Heart Condition
Cardiomyopathy is any disease that impairs the functioning of the heart muscle. Arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia or ARD is one of the rarest forms and affects approximately 1 in 5,000 people. Patients usually inherit it from their parents.
ARD kills the muscle tissue in the right ventricle of the heart. It replaces with fat or scar tissue. This makes it difficult for the heart to pump blood throughout the body and causes arrhythmias.
Symptoms include palpitations and fainting. The condition also makes it far more likely for those suffering from it to go into sudden cardiac arrest.
This was, unfortunately, the case in the death of Suzanne Crough. If she had more time, she may have been able to restart her career and achieve all of her dreams. The problem with heart conditions like ARD is that you never know how much time you have left.
Like and subscribe for more on the members of your favorite TV families. Keep watching to learn about Suzanne Crough’s life and how the rest of the Partridge Family cast felt about her death.
Suzanne’s Life and Career
Suzanne Jesse Crough was born in Fullerton, California on March 6, 1963, to Wilfred and Anne Crough. She began acting at the age of 5, and her first gigs were commercials for brands like Kraft and Barbie.
Suzanne’s breakout role was Tracy on The Partridge Family. The show told the story of a family playing in their own band together. It ran from September 1970 to March 1974. It even spawned an animated spinoff called The Partridge Family 2200 A.D. that ran from 1974-1975.
The Partridge Family pans by critics for being unrealistic but becomes a hit with fans. In its 2nd and 3rd years, it nominates for a Grammy for Best New Artist in 1970 but lost to The Carpenters. It nominates for 2 golden globes for Best TV Show and Best TV Actress in the Musical or Comedy category.
Suzanne’s Acting Career
Suzanne’s acting career included a total of 5 live-action roles and 3 voice roles. She earned an uncredited role on Street Dawn in 1976. She also played Stevie Freedman in Mulligan’s Stew and earned a minor role in The New Adventures of Wonder Woman.
Suzanne admitted in an interview that she struggled to transition from a child to an adult actress. She met her husband William Condray at the age of 20, and he attempted to help her find more roles.
Suzanne signed a contract to be on VH1’s The New Partridge Family in 2004, a role that could have thrust her back into the public eye. To her dismay, the reboot never made it past the pilot. She was 6 months pregnant at the time and was unable to find any other roles. She tried to restart her acting career 3 years later but was pregnant again and faced the same problems.
Suzanne’s passion is always acting but, in order to support her children, she forces to get a “real job.” Throughout her life, she was the owner of the Book Center bookstore in Temecula, California, and the manager at an Office Max in Bullhead City, Arizona.
Despite her struggles, she never gave up her hopes to get back into acting after her children grew up. It had been a part of her life for so long that she couldn’t give it up.
Suzanne got as much work as she could in the last years of her life. Her final acting credits were for the Oscar-winning short film Teenage Father in 1978 and the TV movie Children of Divorce in 1980.
What Happened to the Rest of The Partridge Family?
The death of a cast member is devastating for fans of any show because it feels like the end of a relationship they’ve been cultivating with their characters for years. This feeling of loss is even more powerful for fellow cast members who work alongside them.
Many of the living members of The Partridge Family speak positively of Suzanne Crough and say she misses her. Those who went before her never got to make a public statement, but it’s likely they would have done the same.
Living Partridge Family Members
Several members of the Partridge family lived on to publicly express their condolences after Suzanne Crough’s death. A few of her surviving castmates include Danny Bonaduce, Shirley Jones, and Susan Dey.
Danny played Danny Partridge, one of the family’s young children. He struggled to read lines due to his dyslexia, but his eidetic memory helped him overcome it.
Danny lost his way after the show ended and fell into the trap of substance abuse. He was arrested in 1990 for buying cocaine.
Addiction took away his hope for the future for a period of time. He admits that “everyone thought I’d be the first Partridge to go.”
After Suzanne’s Death
Danny managed to overcome substance abuse and survived to offered condolences after Suzanne’s death. He says that she is a wonderful lady and mother who will miss.
Shirley Jones was the first official Partridge Family member to be cast. She played Shirley Partridge and got close to her TV daughter over the years. She said that the situation was especially tragic because Suzanne had “everything to live for.”
Susan Dey fell out with David after the show ended. She’s since refused to attend any Partridge Family reunions. She’s the only member who consistently stays away and hasn’t publicly voiced her opinion about Suzanne’s death.
Other Partridge Family Deaths
Not all members of the Partridge family were fortunate enough to survive long enough to publicly express their condolences. David Cassidy and Dave Madden both died before Suzanne Crough.
David Bruce Cassidy was born on April 12, 1950, to Jack Cassidy and Evelyn Ward. They were divorced when he was a child, and his father got remarried to Shirley Jones in 1956.
David was always exposed to fame and music thanks to his parents. They were all either musicians, actors, or both.
The Partridge Family was his breakout role and introduced the world to his musical talents. He released several successful solo albums. He also had a radio hit with the song I Think I Love You. It beat out Let It Be by the Beatles for the top spot on the Billboard Top 100 in 1970. Watch our video to learn about the rare condition that killed Suzanne Crough, also known as Tracy from the Partridge family, at 52 years old.
A Major Heartthrob Teenager
David was a major heartthrob as a teenager, but his star began to fade in the mid-’70s after The Partridge Family ended. His 1978 TV drama David Cassidy- Man Undercover only lasted for 1 season. He moved on to theater and toured in several productions. He also succeeded in Las Vegas thanks to shows such as 1996’s EFX, 1999’s The Rat Pack is Back, and 2000’s At the Copa.
David wrote an autobiography titled Could It Be Forever? My Story in 2007. He continued to tour, found a role in the 2009 comedy series Ruby and the Rockits, and guest-starred in CSI in 2013.
The actor was riding high. For some time, it seemed like he would be able to rise above the drama and tabloid stories that plague so many child stars. This, unfortunately, wasn’t the case.
After a string of DUI arrests, he entered rehab for substance abuse in 2014. His addiction drained his bank account, and he was forced to file for bankruptcy in 2017.
David claimed to have a dementia diagnosis in an interview with People Magazine in 2017. His grandmother and mother had also suffered from it.
Despite the family history, David revealed the truth in a Biography documentary special titled David Cassidy: The Last Session. He only claimed to suffer from dementia to hide how excessive drinking had affected his liver.
The damage became so severe that David was rushed to the hospital on November 18, 2017. His family surrounded him, even his daughter Katie with whom he had a tumultuous relationship. She was written out of his will, and most of his estate went to his son Beau.
David Cassidy was declared dead on November 21, 2017, at the age of 67.
Dave Madden was born in Ontario Canada. He played Reuben Kinkaid, the Partridge Family’s manager. His feuding with Danny Bonaduce’s character was the show’s key comedic element. Behind the scenes, he served as Danny’s surrogate father.
Dave’s career began when he was part of the Laugh-In Comedy series. His first acting role was on the 60’s sitcom Camp Runamuck. He earned a small role as a customer at Mel’s Diner in the sitcom Alice. He also guest-starred on series such as Bewitched, Barney Miller, Happy Days, The Love Boat, and Fantasy Island.
Dave’s niece said that he went to a hospice center in Jacksonville, Florida days before his death. He was suffering from heart and kidney failure that caused him extreme pain.
Dave Madden died on January 16, 2014, at the age of 82.
Suzanne Crough’s most memorable role was Tracy on the beloved Partridge Family. Her short but impactful career was ended too soon by a rare heart condition. Her fans and fellow cast members will keep her memory and the legacy of other fallen castmates alive.
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