Marvel Star, Kenneth Mitchell, Dead at 49

Kenneth Mitchell Dead at 49
Credit: Marvel

Sad news coming out of Hollywood this weekend. Kenneth Mitchell, who starred in many hit films and television shows, has passed away. He was just 49 years old.¬†According to Mitchell’s family, the actor died from complications from ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Mitchell was diagnosed with the progressive disease in 2018. According to the Mayo Clinic, ALS — Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis — is a nervous system disease that affects the brain and the spinal cord. ALS will eventually cause a near-complete loss of muscle control. This causes the person suffering to end up in a wheelchair, oftentimes unable to feel themselves, and even can cause them to lose the ability to speak.

Kenneth Mitchell

Credit: Ken Mitchell Instagram

Kenneth Mitchell was born in Toronto, Canada in 1974, but did not get into acting until he was in his late 20s. His big break came when he was cast as Ralph Cox in Disney’s 2004 film,¬†Miracle. Miracle¬†told the story of Herb Books (played by Kurt Russell), a former hockey player-turned-coach, who led the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team to a stunning victory over the Soviet Union.

From there, Mitchell’s career took off, and he starred in a ton of well-known movies and television shows. He played Eric Green in the show¬†Jericho, Sam Lucas in¬†Ghost Whisperer, and Deacon Joe Hurley in¬†Frequency.

Miracle Disney Movie

Credit: Disney

Related:¬†ABC Star’s Cause of Death Revealed Months After Shocking Death

His work in Miracle was not the only time Mitchell worked with Disney. Mitchell played Deke Slayton in the hit ABC show, The Astronaut Wives Club. He also starred as Wes Gable in the ABC Family (now Freeform) show, Switched at Birth. Marvel fans may recognize him as Joseph Danvers, the father of Carol Danvers (AKA Captain Marvel), who made an appearance in The Marvels.

In some of his more recent roles, because of his ALS, Mitchell appeared on-screen in a wheelchair.

Kenneth Mitchell Switched at Birth

Credit: Disney

Mr. Mitchell’s family announced his death, and shared a heartfelt message about him, on the actor’s Instagram page.

With heavy hearts we announce the passing of Kenneth Alexander Mitchell, beloved father, husband, brother, uncle, son and dear friend to many. 

Born in Toronto, Canada on November 25, 1974 to Diane and David Mitchell, Ken was widely known as an actor in many films and television shows. He’s portrayed an Olympic hopeful, an apocalypse survivor, an astronaut, a superhero’s dad, and four unique Star Trekkers. But to those close to him he was known as a hope seeker, daydreamer, dream believer, soccer player, beach walker, bear hugger, landscape designer, garden grower, canoe paddler, happy camper, nature explorer, cat lover, infectious laugher, gift giver, note sender, movie goer, art maker, music listener, sports connoisseur, detailed particular, Leafs supporter, world traveler, uncle joker, younger brother, Susan’s partner, and more than anything else, a proud father.

Kenny was the keeper of countless enduring friendships. Like a massive star exploding with kindness, purity, and a particular brand of silly, you were pulled right into his orbit. Once captured, Kenny could bathe you in positivity, compassion, thoughtfulness, and hilarity, and make you feel so loved. 

Ken was a giver, a listener, a sentimentalist, and an excellent observer of his surroundings. One of his most endearing qualities as a friend is that Kenny loved to watch others shine. He was a conductor of connecting friends together and thoroughly enjoyed prompting a good story… and boy oh boy did he love to laugh. He absolutely loved to laugh.

Ken had a keen passion and detailed eye for beauty in the arts. He thrived creatively which could be easily seen in his architecture, graphic design, acting, photography, writing, broad love of music, and all throughout his home in Studio City, California. Ken embodied the timelessness of nature, our connection with each other, and the shimmering quiet of the present moment. He often reminded us that the greatest beauty can be found in the littlest of things. 

Ken was diligent and hardworking in everything he did, but as a father, these traits found their fullest expression. He was extremely dedicated to being a positive and playful force in the lives of his children. Regardless of his later disabilities, Ken discovered a higher calling to be more fully himself for his kids. Ken will be forever proud of who his children have become. 

For five and a half years Ken faced a series of awful challenges from ALS. And in truest Ken fashion, he managed to rise above each one with grace and commitment to living a full and joyous life in each moment. He lived by the principles that each day is a gift and that we never walk alone. His life is a shining example of how full one can be when you live with love, compassion, humour, inclusion, and community. Ken was an inspirational work of art to all the hearts he touched. 

Ken is forever grateful for the massive amounts of love and endless support he received from his community along this journey. Especially the courage, resilience, and strength displayed from his extraordinary wife, family, and friends. 

Kenneth is survived by his wife Susan, their children Lilah and Kallum, his parents Diane and David, brother Sean (Norah), in-laws Sally and Bill Pratt, sister-in-law Beth (Ajay), nieces and nephews Kiran, Jyoti, Avery, and Eliza… and cats Chai and Cin.¬†

Kenneth requests that any gifts be directed towards ALS research or in support of his children. 

Kenneth Mitchell

Credit: Ken Mitchell Instagram

Mitchell met his wife, actress Susan May Pratt, on the set of Showtime’s Charms For the Easy Life, in 2001. The two said that sparks flew when their characters had to kiss. They were married in 2006.

Most recently, Mitchell appeared as Joe in the Hulu original series, The Old Man.

If you would like to donate to ALS research, you can click the link here, which will take you to the ALS Association website.

We extend our heartfelt sympathies to the family and friends of Kenneth Mitchell. May he rest in peace. 

About Krysten Swensen

A born and bred New England girl living the Disney life in Southern California. I love to read, to watch The Golden Girls, and love everything to do with Disney and Universal. I also love to share daily doses of Disney on my Disney Instagram @BrazzleDazzleDisney!

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