‘ALF’ actor Benji Gregory found dead at 46, sister reveals

Editor's note: This article has been updated to reflect the correct age of Benji Gregory at the time of his death.

(NEXSTAR) – Benji Gregory, the former child actor who played Brian Tanner on all four seasons of “ALF,” was found dead in his car last month, his sister revealed on Facebook.

“It is with a heavy heart my family has suffered a loss way too early,” Rebecca Hertzberg-Pfaffinger wrote in a post shared Wednesday. “Ben was a great Son, Brother and Uncle. He was fun to be around and made us laugh quite often. Still, going through his things, I find myself laughing at little videos or notes of his, in between crying.”

Hertzberg-Pfaffinger told The New York Times that Gregory died in a parking lot on June 13 in Peoria, Arizona. In her Facebook post, she said her brother died of “vehicular heatstroke” alongside his service dog, though a representative for the Maricopa County Medical Examiner's Office told TMZ that Gregory’s cause of death was still pending.

Benji Gregory (top left) is pictured with "ALF" castmates Max Wright (bottom left), Andrea Elson (top right) and Anne Shedeen. (Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

Gregory, born Benjamin Gregory Hertzberg in Encino, California, was born into a family of actors, according to his IMDb biography. He had earlier roles on shows such as “The A-Team,” “T.J. Hooker” and “Punky Brewster” before landing a starring role on “ALF” in 1986, per his IMDb credits.

Gregory was a member of the NBC series’ main cast throughout all four seasons of the show, which ended in March 1990.

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Gregory later joined the Navy for a “few years” when he was 25, he remarked on a 2021 episode of the “Splat From the Past” podcast.

Gregory also said during his appearance that he suffered from depression, bipolar disorder and insomnia, sometimes going “four or five days” without sleep, he said.

 “I just don’t feel tired,” he told the show’s host. “I always ask my psychiatrist, she’ll be … asking questions about it. … I’ll ask her, I’ll say, “Well, why do you go to bed?” Well, it’s because usually it’s because you feel tired, right? Well, I just never get that feeling of being tired. It’s kind of weird.”

The two had also discussed the possibility of an “ALF” reboot, and whether Gregory would be interested in participating, should one go into production.

“Yeah, I’d do it,” Gregory said at the time.

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