Erin Moran, the child actress who played Richie Cunningham's precocious younger sister Joanie on the popular 1970s sitcom Happy Days, and later starred in the short-lived series Joanie Loves Chachi, has died at age 56.
According to a statement from the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department, “Harrison County dispatch received a 911 call referencing an unresponsive female” on Saturday [22 April] at approximately 4:07 p.m. local time. “Upon the arrival of first responders, it was determined that Erin Marie Moran Fleischmann was deceased. An autopsy is pending.”
A cause of death has not yet been determined.
Director Ron Howard, who played the role of her older brother Richie Cunningham for several years on Happy Days, tweeted a remembrance:
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. https://t.co/8HmdL0JKlf
— Ron Howard (@RealRonHoward) April 23, 2017