Girlfriends is enjoying a renewed interest thanks to its inclusion on Netflix but Reggie Hayes, the actor who played William on the popular show, is currently battling health issues.
Hayes was hospitalized last week with congestive heart failure in Los Angeles and due to the wildfires in California, he’s had difficulty with breathing.
” I was in the hospital overnight, they were having trouble getting my blood pressure back down,” Hayes told the Chicago Tribune. “Seems like the more they look, the more problems they find.”
Hayes starred on Girlfriends from 2000 to 2008, a series focused on the lives of four Black women including Tracee Ellis Ross, Golden Brooks, Jill Marie Jones and Persia White. Hayes played the nerdy lawyer who evolved into a love interest for Ross’ character Joan and brought a bit of levity as well as comedy to the show. He won an NAACP Image Award on three occasions in the Best Supporting Actor in A Comedy Series category.
The 51-year-old has struggled to find work since, revealing that he sold the house he lived in while he was on the show and then lived in his sister’s garage for a number of years.
“I tried being a bouncer for a while, and everyone in the club wanted their picture taken with me,” Hayes said. “I’m 6-feet-2 but everybody knows I’m like a mouse; once you know me, you know I’m a pushover. So that didn’t work out. I also tried being a furniture mover, but I was in my 40s so that only lasted a couple of days. My back never would have survived it.”
He is appreciative of the revival of Girlfriends love and the greater appreciation for the show. “And with ‘Girlfriends’ on Netflix and everybody talking about it again, it’s a really nice warm feeling,” he said.