Character actor Harold Gould dies

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Actor Harold Gould attends the 'Golden Girls Reunion' at the Sunset-Gower Studios on May 4, 2006 in Los Angeles, California.

The name may be hard to place, but in the last few decades it was hard to miss the handsome, mustached face of Harold Gould. The character actor died Saturday in Woodland Hills.

He played Valerie Harper’s father in the 1970s sitcom “Rhoda” and wooed Betty White about 15 years later in “The Golden Girls.”

In that instance, the object of his affections was a cradle-robber: Gould was 86 years old — a couple of years younger than White — when he died at the Motion Picture and Television Fund retirement home.

Through five decades he turned up in a slew of TV shows from “Perry Mason” to “Love American Style” to “Cold Case.” Gould also put his stylish stamp on the role of Kid Twist in “The Sting” with Paul Newman and Robert Redford. Often he portrayed a wise, professorial fellow — perhaps he developed that persona teaching drama at colleges including UC Riverside early in his career.

Harold Gould held a Ph.D in dramatic speech and literature from Cornell University, a U.S. Army turret gunner’s position in France during World War II, and the same wedding ring on his finger for 60 years. He was a man for all seasons — who happened to play one on TV.

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