2500 years ago, Plato's teacher Socrates was taken from the world when authorities forced the philosopher to drink poison after they convicted him of corrupting the youth of Athens. Likewise, just nine years ago today, Dana Plato, the actress who bore the name of the great man's favorite student, was taken from us too soon when she died of an overdose.

Dana was a star at age 15 when she got the role of Kimberly on the hit NBC sitcom Diff'rent Strokes. But after she got pregnant and was subsequently fired, her career stalled. In 1989 she posed naked in Playboy and was arrested two years later for armed robbery. Later, Dana got roles in low-budget exploitation and softcore movies, including Different Strokes: The Story of Jack and Jill...and Jill (1997), in which she plays a lesbian who helps Landon Hall experience a topless sexual awakening. After the movie, Dana reported that she was a lesbian in real life, but later retracted the statement. Apparently her sexual tastes, like her career, ran the gamut. She died tragically the next year, right after an interview on The Howard Stern Show.

Before he drank his hemlock, Socrates proclaimed that he was happy to die before succumbing to the ravages of old age. Though Dana surely left us far too soon, no one can deny that she left us as a babe in her prime.