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Peter Falk's Daughter: My Dad Has Alzheimer's

12/16/2008 12:15 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

The daughter of Hollywood legend Peter Falk says her father is no longer competent to run his own life because he suffers from Alzheimer's disease and dementia.

Catherine Falk filed legal papers in L.A. County Superior Court claiming her father "requires full-time custodial care for his health and safety."

In the docs, Catherine claims she is worried her father "can easily be deceived into transferring away property" and believes a conservatorship will protect Peter from "fraud or undue influence."

A hearing on the matter is set for next month. Calls to Falk's reps were not returned.


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i am sad to read about this, i always loved columbo. peter falk is a great actor. i wish the best for him and his family

2104 days ago


Alzheimer's is what recently took away my 88 year-old mother so I well know what it does to the entire family.
Mercifully, Mom simply went to sleep and never awakened. Sadly, she was not "there" for a very long time.

2104 days ago


I was sorry to hear about Peter Falk. He entertained Americans for many years as Colombo. He will always be an American favorite.
Thank you to Poster #14, Elaine Renoire for your information about conservatorships. My mom is an 81 year old Alzheimers sufferer who was still getting around on her own until last year when we started getting reports of her walking out into traffic, but especially her going to the bank and withdrawing hundred of dollars each time but not knowing where the money was or what she did with it the next day when we would find the withdrawal slip. But the bank said there was nothing they could do without legal authroization (guardianship--which costs around $5000.00). ( It is too late for power of attorney because she has to knowingly agree--$200.00) Fortunately we were able to get a live-in for alot less than $5000.

Peter Falks family probably won't have the financial problems and I hope they don't have any physical illness problems. We are very lucky because my mom is in very good physical health. Lets hope Peter Falks celebrity brings more light on Alzheimers and dementia and brings us closer to a cure.

2104 days ago

Not shocked    

I hope this isn't true! I love Peter Falk. But I also hope this isn't his daughter who he had a restraining order against. I used to work for MCA/Universal where they were shooting Columbo and his daughter was banned from the Lot. She had a lot of drug problems and was more than a little unstable. Anyway, I hope this isn't the same daughter.

2104 days ago


I just had my husband pass from Alzheimer's Disease. He got it at only 52 - til 67. Very heartbreaking disease. Mine got it very early in life.
Peter is 81 - which is the most common age for this disease. My very deep condolences. Peter knows he's failing and it's a very scary thing for him, too. He still knows what's going on. My heart goes out to his daughter.

best of luck to you Peter,
always enjoyed you in the roll of Columbo

2104 days ago

Bonnie M.    

Last time I was in the LAX airport ,I saw Peter Falk go into the mens room, My heart dropped and I had to make a move without looking stupid to meet him. Some celebrities don't like to be approached which is understandable. I was traveling with my son and husband , my son was 8 yrs. old then now 16. I ran to the ladies room and stood there and walked out as if it was a coincidence we should both walk out together. I acted surprised and said "Columbo" not knowing how he was going to react. He answered with a surprised reaction that no one recognizes him anymore. He was wearing a leather coat and a hat and short and sorta looked like a weathered Mexican. To me it was like meeting legend from T.V. land. I asked him he would meet my son Max so he someday will remember this moment. Mr. Falk walked up to Max and shook his hand with great humility. When we got down to luggage Mr. Falk from a distance waved to my son and gave him winks. He was so down to earth . LATER THAT EVENING would you believe Columbo was on T.V and Max got to see him on television. Usually an experience like this is forgotten when your only 8 years old, not my Max , he still remembers and will always keep Columbo in his memories.

2104 days ago

Prince Von A-Hole    

Not to long ago it seems TMZ was poking fun at him and his condition. How soon we forget.

2104 days ago


Catherine, Take heart. I have been where you are. My own brother was in such denial that I had to be the one to go for conservatership for my mother - having it given to my father - which he thought was cruel - even when I showed him the medical records that she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's - only after I fired the Quack that had cared for her for years (I had medical power of attorney). She - an intelligent, achieved business woman - who had attended business college in the 1930's, was my role model - showing me I could have it all - be a wife, mom, and successful - and well educated President of my own business for over 10 years - and @ 64 y o start my PhD with 7 grandkids!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I had to tough it out and get the conservertorship! Not only for her - but later - with my brothers protests - for my father! HMy brother now owns the family home - no big thing - hasn't worked for 15 yrs - never paid rent - lived at home - has a college degree, has barred me from the property and anything I might want to have to remember from my parents - who adopted me in 1944!
You hang in there - It is a pain and only those of us who have lived with it can understand . I will keep you in my prayers.

2104 days ago


I am so very sad to learn that Peter has Alzheimer's. As most of the other posters have said, I loved him as Columbo. My prayers go out to all the family. God Bless you, Peter, and all the family. Catherine, it won't be an easy road for either of you. Thank you for caring enough about your father to do this for him.

Thanks to the "posters" for showing compassion to this family. This is something that is rarely seen on TMZ!

2104 days ago


This is really sad and tragic for his family and friends. I do HOPE that the idiots with cameras -sorry guys!- will leave him and his family the hell alone with this! It is something to respect PRIVACY when there is a serious illness involved, particularly one which will be fatal, from which there IS no turning back. My mom passed away from this in her nineties, but much younger people get it as has happened here. (Clearly something has.)
It is hideous for the family to live though, and I cannot imagine what it could be like for the person who has the illness especially if that individual is relatively young. I do hope they have things settled soon.

2104 days ago


My condolences to his family. Peter Faulk was a marvelous actor and will be remembered and not forgotton. Sorry to hear this. God Bless.

2104 days ago


I, too, feel very badly for this family. I really think that you should delete the email of the guy solicitating "friendships" fro m this site, however. How inappropriate! Take it off of there!

2104 days ago

Tobey Edward    

Has President Bush been told about this? He could probably help out. He is busy I know but I think someone needs to let him know about this because I am sure he could do something that would help.

2104 days ago

Buck NekkidX    

This is truly a sad day. I missed seeing Colombo as I worked "evenings". However, I was fortunate to see Mr. Faulk play a loving grandfather who comes to read to his sick grandson (Fred Savage) in "The Princess Bride". It has a wonderful all-star cast. He played the part so well, you'd want him to read to you when you're sick in bed. ;-) more thing. I know what dementia is, as I have it as well. Each day, I'm either losing what I used to know or not able to express it. May GOD, THE CREATOR richly bless each one of you that reads this, including Peter and his family

Respectfully submitted,

2104 days ago

Pamla Berry    

I feel this is so sad. I feel confident Mr Falk may have Alzheimer's, But should his daughter be in charge of HIS property, Earnings and money.
It IS His. He worked for it. Not her. if anyone should control it it should be a court appointed custodian ho has to be held accountable to the Judicial system should funds and or property suddenly come missing.
Sounds to me she needs money and this is an easy way to get it......

2104 days ago
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