‘MAS*H’ star Alan Alda overcame childhood struggles, now battles Parkinson’s

M*A*S*H’ star Alan Alda overcame childhood struggles, now battles Parkinson’sConsidered a Hollywood treasure thanks to his role as Hawkeye Pierce on the much-loved TV show “M*A*S*H,” Alan Alda is also admired for overcoming many childhood struggles on his road to success.The now 86-year-old actor, director, and writer gained international fame playing the wisecracking doctor Benjamin Franklin “Hawkeye” Pierce in the long-running TV show.
Sadly, he’s now battling Parkinson’s disease, and recently, he revealed some of the biggest challenges that come with the condition.

The wartime comedy and drama M*A*S*H, which ran from 1972 to 1983, is one of the highest-rated shows in U.S. television history and its final episode remains one of the most-watched finales of any television series.Alan Alda ended up winning a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Television Series six times for his part in the beloved show.Despite coming from a showbiz family the highly-rated actor’s childhood was one of many upheavals, struggles, and trauma, which began at a young age.Born in the Bronx in 1936 Alan spent his childhood with his parents traveling around the United States in support of his father’s job as a performer in burlesque theatres. His father Robert Alda (born Alfonso Giuseppe Giovanni Roberto D’Abruzzo) was an actor and singer, and his mother Joan Browne was a homemaker and former beauty-pageant winner.

In his memoir, “Never Have Your Dog Stuffed — and Other Things I’ve Learned,” Alan revealed that his father often spent many nights away from home working and his mom struggled with her mental health.During the 40s and 50s mental illness was a taboo subject with very few resources to help so many families were left to deal with it alone.“How much easier it could have been for my father and me to face her illness together; to compare notes, to figure out strategies. Instead, each of us was on [our] own,” he wrote in his 2005 memoir.He recalled a traumatic childhood memory of when he was just six years old and had stayed up with his mother while his father was working late.When Robert got home, his wife accused him of sleeping with another woman. The argument led to Alan’s mother attempting to stab his father with a paring knife. Before anyone was harmed, Alan grabbed the knife from his parents and rammed it into the table, bending the point.