Cindy Williams has broken her silence on the death of her former co-star and friend, Penny Marshall, who passed away Monday from complication from diabetes. Cindy and Penny starred on “Laverne & Shirley” from 1976 to 1983.
“What an extraordinary loss. My good friend Penny Marshall is gone. One in a million,” Cindy said in a statement. “Utterly unique, a truly great talent. And, oh, what fun we had! Can’t describe how I’ll miss her.”
Another “Laverne & Shirley” star, David Lander – better known as Squiggy – credits Penny for giving him his first major role in Hollywood. He said that she fought hard to get him and Michael McKean – also known as Lenny – on the show.
Penny knew the producers would never let her put David and Michael on the show unless they saw them in character, so Penny arranged for them to perform as Lenny and Squiggy in front of a hundred guests at a party she was throwing with her then-husband, Rob Reiner. They killed it, and Penny’s brother, Garry Marshall, called and offered them roles the next day. They ended up being on all eight seasons. He said that she “had a tremendous impression on his life.”