Erin Moran died at 56
Erin Moran died at 56

RIP, Erin Moran

Erin Moran, the former child star, died on Saturday at the age of 56. She played Joanie Cunningham in the sitcoms “Happy Days” and “Joanie Loves Chachi,”

Officials in Indiana said “received a 911 call about an unresponsive female. Upon arrival of first responders, it was determined that Erin Moran Fleischmann was deceased. An autopsy is pending”

A Burbank native, Erin Moran began acting in TV and movies before she was 10 years old. She shot to fame aged just 14, when she joined the cast in 1974 as feisty little sister of Richie Cunningham. Erin Moran had nearly a decade’s worth of experience when she was cast in 1974 in “Happy Days” as Joanie Cunningham, She played the kid sister to high school student Richie Cunningham, played by Ron Howard.

Remembering the time of nostalgia for the apparently innocent 1950s, the sitcom was set in Milwaukee and soon became a hit. Howard and Henry Winkler, who played tough guy Arthur “The Fonz” Fonzarelli, were the show’s biggest stars, but Moran also became famous. In 1982, she was combined off with fellow “Happy Days” performer Scott Baio in the “Joanie Loves Chachi.”

Her latest credits included “The Love Boat” and “Murder, She Wrote,” but she never approached the same success as of “Happy Days” and was more frequently in the news for her many personal struggles. She most recently also appeared on VH1’s reality show “Celebrity Fit Club” in 2008 and low-budget film “Not Another B Movie” 2010.

 

Henry Winkler, who was starred opposite Erin Moran as The Fonz in ABC’s iconic series, tweeted: “OH Erin…now you will finally have the peace you wanted so badly here on earth. Rest In It serenely now…too soon.

Erin Moran was just 14 when she hired on to play Ron Howard’s sister in the family comedy, which aired from 1974 to 1984.

Howard tweeted, “Such sad sad news. RIP Erin. I’ll always choose to remember you on our show making scenes better, getting laughs and lighting up tv screens.”

Erin Moran in one of her interview said that “What happened with all of us was like we were this family. It was so surreal with all the cast members…They were my family, get it?”

The actress, however, seemingly wasn’t as contented about appearing in “Joanie Loves Chachi,” the short-lived sitcom, which was co-starred by Scott Baio.

“I liked working with the people. But I didn’t even want to do it. I was talked into it,” she said. “I wanted to stay on ‘Happy Days.’ They were running them at the same time.”

“Joanie Loves Chachi” only continued one season (1982-83) before it was pulled off the air.

Erin Moran and some of her “Happy Days” co-stars Anson Williams, Marion Ross, Don Most and the widow of Tom Bosley sued $10 million against CBS and Paramount in 2012, They claimed that they never received merchandise royalties. They were payable under their agreements. The case was later settled out of court. Neither Winkler nor Howard was part of the lawsuit.

Most said , “I am so incredibly sad to hear about Erin. She was a wonderful, sweet, caring, talented woman. As I write this I can’t really comprehend this right now. A very painful loss. It gives me some comfort to know that she’s with Tom, Al, Pat and Garry.  Rest In Peace, sweet Erin.”

Williams, who played Potsie in “Happy Days,” said, “Erin was a person who made everyone around her feel better. She truly cared about others first, a true angel. I will miss her so much, but know that she is in God’s hands. RIP sweet angel.”