Connie Needham Played Elizabeth Bradford on "Eight Is Enough." See Her Now at 61.
You grew up with the Bradford family—now see the youngest daughter all grown up!
If you grew up in the '70s, you probably remember Eight Is Enough, ABC's dramatic comedy about a widowed newspaper columnist and his eight children. The show ran for five seasons before wrapping in 1981—and during that time, the sizable family gained a following to match. The youngest of the five girls in the brood, Elizabeth Bradford, was played by actor Connie Needham, who was just 18 when the show premiered. Today, Needham is 61 and has moved into another field of entertainment in her native California. Read on to see her now!
Needham continued acting after Eight Is Enough.
Needham is best known as one of the eight Bradford kids, but after the series concluded, she appeared in smaller roles on several other shows. Most notably, she played two different characters on the TV series Fame, which told the story of high school students at a performing arts academy in New York City. Additionally, she appeared on The Love Boat, Police Squad!, L.A. Law, and in 1995, she was cast in one episode of Ellen as a waitress.
Needham also appeared in two Eight Is Enough spin-off movies entitled Eight Is Enough: A Family Reunion and An Eight Is Enough Wedding.
In addition to being an actor, Needham is an accomplished dancer.
Though Needham hasn't acted in several decades, she hasn't left the world of entertainment entirely. Most recently, she has worked as a dance instructor in Orange County, California. For some, this comes as no surprise, given that two of her most notable TV roles after Eight Is Enough were as dance instructors on Fame and Police Squad!
Needham had a difficult battle with ovarian cancer.
In 2009, Needham was diagnosed with stage three ovarian cancer. The following year, the star opened up to Radar Online to share the challenges of her treatment and even recalled the moment she learned she was sick. "I was having a lot of bloating and I started having a little difficulty breathing to the point that I thought I had a lung infection," she shared. After a physical exam and further testing, she was diagnosed with cancer. "I went into that weird sort of shock, where everything shuts down and you don't hear anything else," she explained.
After her own diagnosis, Needham began advocating for the Women's Cancer Research Foundation, even competing in a Dancing With the Stars-style fundraiser on behalf of the organization. Today, Needham has reportedly made a full recovery from her cancer, but she is still spreading a message of awareness to others. "Pay close attention to your body and don't assume things are normal," she warned when speaking with Radar Online.
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She married a crew member from her hit show.
In 1979, while Eight Is Enough was in its third season, Connie married David Needham, a set designer on the show with Hollywood lineage (his father was Hal Needham, the famed stuntman and producer who won an honorary Oscar in 2012). The couple had two daughters, Kimberly and Taylor Needham, and divorced in 2005.
However, while speaking with Radar in 2010, she discussed weathering her cancer diagnosis with the support of a more recent love interest. "I have a fabulous boyfriend, bless his heart, and he stayed right with me," she said.