Cindy Williams, 75, who played Shirley opposite Penny Marshall’s Laverne on the popular sitcom “Laverne & Shirley,” died after a brief illness on Jan. 25.
Williams worked with some of Hollywood’s most elite directors in a film career that preceded her full-time move to television, appearing in George Cukor’s “Travels With My Aunt,” George Lucas’ “American Graffiti” and Francis Ford Coppola’s “The Conversation” between 1972 and 1974.
But she was by far best known for “Laverne & Shirley,” the “Happy Days” spinoff that ran on ABC from 1976 to 1983. In its prime, it was among the most popular shows on TV.
Bobby Hull, 84, a Hall of Fame winger and two-time National Hockey League MVP who helped the Chicago Blackhawks win the Stanley Cup in 1961, has died, the team announced Wednesday.
No other details about his death were provided.
Hull was one of the most prolific forwards in NHL history, scoring 610 times during his 16-year career with Chicago, Hartford and Winnipeg. Nicknamed “The Golden Jet” for his speed and blond hair, he also collected 303 goals while playing for the Jets in the World Hockey Association for seven seasons.
Annie Wersching, 45, the actor known for her work in the TV series “24” and “Runaways,” as well as the video game “The Last of Us,” died of cancer Jan. 29 in Los Angeles.
In Marvel’s “Runaways,” Wersching played nefarious church leader Leslie Dean. She also starred as FBI agent Renee Walker in the long-running crime drama “24” and voiced smuggler Tess Servopoulos in the popular video game “The Last of Us.”
On Twitter, “The Last of Us” creator Neil Druckmann wrote, “We just lost a beautiful artist and human being. My heart is shattered. Thoughts are with her loved ones.”
Tom Verlaine, 73, the acclaimed vocalist-guitarist whose experimental art-rock band Television helped define the New York City punk scene in the ’70s, died Jan. 28.
Verlaine’s death was announced by Jesse Paris Smith, the daughter of fellow ’70s New York City punk-rock trailblazer Patti Smith, who added that he died “after a brief illness” but did not indicate a cause, according to The New York Times.
Unlike a number of his contemporaries from New York’s early punk glory days at the legendary CBGB’s club — including Smith, Blondie, Talking Heads and the Ramones — Verlaine wouldn’t achieve widespread commercial success or become a household name in America and elsewhere. Yet, he will be remembered for helping create music that is remembered as fondly — at least by a passionate subset of punk fans — as anything that came from those other legends.
Lisa Loring, 64, the former child star who portrayed Wednesday on the original “The Addams Family” series, died Jan. 28.
Loring was 6 when she debuted as Wednesday in “The Addams Family” in 1964. Inspired by the gothic characters from Charles Addams’ cartoons, the ABC series ran for two seasons and more than 60 episodes and also starred Carolyn Jones and John Astin.
Loring also appeared on multiple episodes of “Barnaby Jones” in the late 1970s and “As the World Turns” during the early ’80s.
Kyle Smaine, 31, a world champion halfpipe skier, died Jan. 29 after being buried in an avalanche in the mountains of central Japan.
Smaine, who lived in Lake Tahoe, California, recently posted that he was taking the trip to ski in the backcountry of Japan’s Nagano prefecture to enjoy the “unbelievable snow quality.”
Smaine won the world championship in ski halfpipe in 2015, the year after the event was added to the Olympics. His last major contest was a World Cup in Mammoth Mountain, California, that he won in January 2018.