The Tragic Death Of Laverne & Shirley Actor Cindy Williams

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Actor Cindy Williams has died at the age of 75 in Los Angeles. Her family reported the news of Williams' death on January 30, 2023, according to ABC News. "The passing of our kind, hilarious mother, Cindy Williams, has brought us insurmountable sadness that could never truly be expressed," her family said in a statement released via a spokesperson. "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." Her family said that Williams died following a brief illness. Williams is mourned by her two children, Zak and Emily Hudson.

Williams was most famous for playing Shirley Feeney on the sitcom "Laverne & Shirley," which ran from 1976-1983, per IMDb. The show ran for eight seasons and was a major hit, solidifying Williams as an icon of humor. She went on to bring this boisterous charm to other projects in the following years, and her death is a loss to the rich world of sitcoms. 

People are getting nostalgic after Cindy Williams' death

While Cindy Williams was most famous for her role on "Laverne & Shirley," she had a long, rich career after the show wrapped in 1983. In addition to other roles, she appeared in the 1997 movie "Meet Wally Sparks," 2005's "The Biggest Fan," and the 2012 film "Stealing Roses," per IMDb. Williams also made her Broadway debut in 2007 with "The Drowsy Chaperone," according to Playbill, taking on the role of Mrs. Tottendale after JoAnne Worley stepped down from the role. Williams had other talents too. She published her memoir, "Shirley, I Jest!" in 2015, with a delightful play on her iconic TV show.

The world of Twitter was devastated by the news of Williams' passing. Referencing some of her other major works, one Twitter user wrote, "[She] played a pivotal part in two American cinema landmarks: 'American Graffiti' and 'The Conversation.' What an underrated talent." Another tweeted, "I'm so sorry to hear about the death of Cindy Williams. I've been a Cindy Williams fan since American Graffiti and then of course Laverne and Shirley ... I still [love] watching it [on] classic TV. RIP Cindy and thanks for the [laughs]." Williams' death obviously kicked up some nostalgia for folks, as someone else tweeted: "So so sad! My favorite person through my childhood! I wanted to be Shirley." Didn't we all?