Before moving on to her own spin-off sitcom The Facts of Life, Charlotte Rae co-starred with the late Gary Coleman on Diff'rent Strokes as Mrs. Garrett — and the 84-year-old actress shared her grief over the 42-year-old actor’s tragic death with Entertainment Tonight. "He was a phenomenon," she tells ET. "This little, tiny young kid — smart, talented — and the world just fell in love with him. And I did, too." After hearing the news that Gary died, Charlotte says, "My heart became very heavy; I felt very sad. He was a beautiful soul,” she reveals. "I wished I could be of service to him; I wished I could have helped him, but I felt I couldn't just rush in and do something, and I really felt helpless," she says of Gary's later, more turbulent years that often landed him in the tabloid headlines. "I didn't know what I could do to help his life have a better quality." Although she hadn't seen Gary for years, she says he checked in with her about 10 years ago because of a book that was being written about him. Charlotte invited Gary over to "dish and talk and connect,” but although he agreed to visit, "He never did. I would have loved it, because we had such a happy time together. He was so adorable."