The ex-wife of Gary Coleman filed a petition on Thursday in a Utah court to be appointed as the special administrator of the former child actor’s estate.
The petition filed in 4th District Court in Provo said even though Coleman and Shannon Price were divorced in 2008, she is still his common law wife and that she should be the one to make funeral arrangements.
Price referred to Coleman as her husband when she called 911 on May 26, saying the actor had fallen and was bleeding severely from the back of his head.
Coleman died May 28 after suffering a brain hemorrhage and his last-known will names friend and former manager Dion Mial as his estate’s executor.
Coleman said in the 1999 will that he wanted to be remembered in a wake conducted by people who had no financial ties to the star of the sitcom “Diff’rent Strokes.”
Coleman met Price in 2005 on the set of the movie “Church Ball.” The couple married in 2007 and divorced the next year.
The documents said Price and Coleman lived together at his Santaquin home about 65 miles south of Salt Lake City until his death, maintained joint bank accounts and had sexual relations.
Coleman was still conscious when he was taken to a hospital in Provo, but slipped into unconsciousness the next day and was placed on life support. It was Price — named in an advanced health care directive — who ordered that he be taken off it.
Coleman starred for eight seasons on the sitcom “Diff’rent Strokes,” starting in 1978. The tiny 10-year-old’s “Whachu talkin’ ‘bout?” became a catch phrase in the show about two African-American brothers adopted by a wealthy white man. He played Arnold Jackson, the younger of the two brothers.