Beloved “Ben” Optimistic After Stroke

Archbold suffered the stroke Wednesday morning

Ralph Archbold, well known as the Philly's No. 1 Benjamin Franklin impersonator, is "optimistic" and "looking forward to getting back to work" after having a stroke last week, a friend said.

The beloved impersonator, 67, was alert and cracking jokes Saturday at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, longtime friend J. Nathan Bazzel told

"He keeps asking for a New York strip steak and Diet Coke, which they're not letting him have," said Bazzel, a Thomas Jefferson impersonator.

Archbold suffered the stroke Wednesday morning while he was at home with his wife, Linda Wilde, a noted Betsy Ross impersonator, reported.

According to Philly Future, the city's thoughts and prayers are with Archbold -- who has performed for U.S. presidents and foreign dignitaries, among others -- as he recovers. 

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