Laverne & Shirley star Eddie Mekka dies aged 69

Eddie Mekka, actor known for playing Carmine Ragusa on the classic sitcom Laverne & Shirley, has died. He was 69 years old.

Mekka’s death was announced on his Facebook page on Thursday, which said he “passed away in peace” at his home in California, based on Diversity. Cause of death has not been determined.

Mekka played Carmine, Shirley’s boyfriend nicknamed “The Big Ragoo”, on a popular show Happy Day spin-off ran from 1976 to 1983. He also starred in the sitcom Blansky’s Beautiesand he was nominated for a Tony Award for his performance in sublieutenant. Mekka’s other television roles include appearances on Fantasy Island, Love boat, Moonlight, Family problems, er, and It’s always sunny in Philadelphia. He also heads the Worcester County Light Opera in Massachusetts, based on The Hollywood Reporter.

Mekka’s brother, Warren Mekjian, told NBC News he “always jokes, laughs, loves to sing and dance – he’s a good storyteller and very talented,” adding, “He’s going to be missed.”

Cindy Williams, who plays Shirley on Laverne & Shirley, also dedication on Twitter for “My Beloved Eddie”, a “world-class talent who can do it all”, while actor Michael McKean missed him as a “really nice guy and cheerleader whenever things go awry.” McKean, who plays Lenny on the show, added, “Take these guys seriously.” Laverne & Shirley star Eddie Mekka dies aged 69


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