Stephen Furst Dead: ‘Animal House’ and ‘St. Elsewhere’ Actor Dies at 63

Stephen Furst
Stephen Furst as Dr. Elliot Axelrod in 'St. Elsewhere.' Frank Carroll/NBCU Photo Bank

Stephen Furst, the actor who played frat boy Kent “Flounder” Dorfman in National Lampoon’s Animal House, died from complications of diabetes on Friday, June 16. He was 63.

“Steve has a long list of earthly accomplishments,” the actor’s sons, Nathan and Griffith, wrote on his Facebook page. “He was known to the world as a brilliant and prolific actor and filmmaker, but to his family and many dear friends he was also a beloved husband, father and kind friend whose memory will always be a blessing.”

“To truly honor him, do not cry for the loss of Stephen Furst. But rather, enjoy memories of all the times he made you snicker, laugh, or even snort to your own embarrassment,” the post continued. “He intensely believed that laughter is the best therapy, and he would want us to practice that now. If you knew him personally, remember his gift for lighting up a room. And no matter who you are, when you think of Steve, instead of being sad, celebrate his life by watching one of his movies or use one of his bits to make someone else laugh — really, really hard.”

Nathan also spoke to CNN about his father’s death, saying his battle with diabetes was “getting worse” in recent years. “Sort of the typical things that tend to happen when you have diabetes a long time,” Nathan said.

In addition to his breakout role in 1978’s Animal House, Furst also appeared on TV in St. Elsewhere from 1983 to 1988, and Babylon 5 from 1994 to 1998. He was diagnosed with diabetes in 1996.

Furst is survived by his sons and his wife of 41 years, Lorraine Wright.

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