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Joe E. Tata, the actor best known for playing Nat, owner of the Peach Pit on “Beverly Hills, 90210,” has passed away. He was 85.
The star’s passing was confirmed on Wednesday by his “90210” co-star Ian Ziering.
“Over the past few months we have lost Jessica Klein, one of 90210’s most prolific writers and producers, Denise Douse who played Mrs. Teasley, and now I am very sad to say that Joe E Tata has passed away,” Ziering wrote. “Joey was really an OG, I remember seeing him in the Rockford files with James Garner years before we worked together on 90210.
“He was often one of the background villains in the original Batman series,” the actor said. “One of the happiest people I’ve ever worked with, he was as generous with his wisdom as he was with his kindness. Although the peach pit was a 90210 set, it often felt like the setting for the Joe E Tata show.
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“The old stories he would share, incredible experiences in the entertainment industry that he was a part of, would keep us all captivated,” he continued. “He may have been in the back in many scenes, but he was a guiding force, especially for us guys, on how to appreciate the gift that was 90210. My smile is fading today, but basking in fond memories moves him from my eyes to my heart where he will always be. My sincere condolences go out to his family and friends, as well as everyone else he loved. Rest in peace Joey.”
A Tata spokesperson did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.
According to a GoFundMe account started by Tata’s daughter Kelly, the actor was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2017.
Kelly claimed she served as her father’s caretaker until he “unknowingly signed documents that put him in receivership. He claims he consented to this conservatory under duress.” Kelly noted that she was hospitalized “in the midst of my own health problems.”
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Tata was born on September 13, 1936 in the Bronx. He led a thriving television career in the 1970s and 1980s, thanks to roles in the police dramas “Mannix,” “Adam-12,” “The FBI” and “The Streets of San Francisco.” He also appeared in “General Hospital”, “The Outer Limits” and “Mister Roberts”, among others. However, Tata was best known for being the owner of the Peach Pit on “Beverly Hills, 90210” on which he appeared for 10 seasons.
Tata’s last role was in 2014’s “Mystery Girls”, where he played Principal Frost. Kelly said that then his health “deteriorated”.
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“Nat was a loving father figure to the kids at West Beverly High,” she wrote. “In real life, my dad, Joey, is honest, kind, and a truly incredible dad.”