Rest in Peace: A Major 70’s Sitcom Star Has Passed Away At 75
Cindy Williams is best known for the character she played on the 1970’s sitcom “Lavern & Shirley.” After being cast alongside Penny Marshall as guest stars on the show “Happy Days,” Williams and Marshall went on to get their own show, a spinoff of “Happy Days.” From 1976 through 1982, Williams stared as Shirley Feeney. She was even nominated for a Golden Globe for her role on the show in 1978.
Williams left “Lavern & Shirley” in 1982 after marrying Bill Hudson and becoming pregnant with her first child. The couple went on to have two children together before getting divorced in 2000.
Now, Williams’s family is breaking the sad news that Williams has died. In a statement from her family, her children explained, “The passing of our kind, hilarious mother, Cindy Williams, has brought us insurmountable sadness that could never truly be expressed.” The statement continues, “Knowing and loving her has been our joy and privilege. She was one of a kind, beautiful, generous and possessed a brilliant sense of humor and a glittering spirit that everyone loved.”
According to Williams’s children, Zak and Emily Hudson, their mother died after battling a brief illness. A specific cause of death was not mentioned. She was 75 years old.
Williams’s career didn’t end after becoming a wife and mother. She went on to act in multiple movies and series including “Getting By,” “For Your Love” and “Girlfriends.” She even reunited with Marshall on the show “Sam & Cat.”
Williams once told TVParty.com that she and Marshall were very involved in the scripts for “Lavern & Shirley.” She explained, “We had a litmus test, which was if the script made Penny and me laugh out loud. That’s what we were going for…” She explained that if it made them laugh and made the studio audience laugh, they assumed people watching on TV would laugh too. She continued, “So, if it made us laugh out loud at rehearsal, then we knew it was good to go. When it didn’t, we would re-write it, or try and put things in that made it funny. Once we got the show on its feet and started moving around, we would add things, add lines, and ad lib. The whole cast would.”
She also explained why she thought strict censorship actually made the show even funnier. She explained, “We always thought that our born-again Christian sensor made ‘Laverne & Shirley’ funnier, because it involved clean humor, which everybody really enjoys whether they know it or not.”
Watch some highlights from “Lavern & Shirley” in the video below.