Hill Street Blues actor Taurean Blacque has died following a brief illness. Deadline reports that Blacque’s death was confirmed by his family.

Born Herbert Middleton Jr., Blacque hailed from Newark, New Jersey and got his start acting at the Negro Ensemble Company in New York.

Blacque was perhaps best known for his role as the no-nonsense veteran Detective Neal Washington on NBC’s influential 1980s hit police series.

Blacque portrayed Washington on Hill Street Blues for all seven seasons and earned a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series in 1982.

Prior to his role on Hill Street Blues, Blacque nabbed guest roles on Sanford and Son, What’s Happening, Good Times, The Bob Newhart Show and Taxi.

In the wake of his success on 'Hill Street Blues,' Blacque appeared alongside Vivica A. Fox on Generations

The first daytime soap opera to revolve around an African-American family, from 1989 to 1991. Blacque also appeared on The WB show Savannah and stage productions for the Atlanta Black Theater Company and North Carolina’s Black Theater Festival.

Blacque is survived by 12 children, 18 grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren. He was 82 years old.

Our thoughts are wit hall of his loved ones at this time.