Tom Bosley, ‘Happy Days’ Dad, Dead at 83

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PALM SPRINGS, Calif. –- Actor Tom Bosley famous for his role as Howard Cunningham on the hit TV show “Happy Days” has died at his home in Palm Springs according to TMZ.

The 83-year-old actor had been battling a staph infection his family said in a statement.

“I saw him before I ever got to Hollywood on Broadway, and he was great,” former “Happy Days” co-star Henry Winkler told TMZ. “And then I got to act with him for 10 years and he was great. Tom Bosley was our mentor. He was a true artist.”

Scott Baio told TMZ: “He was a good man who taught me a lot about the business and business itself. He was a professional guy … I’m sad.”

The Chicago born actor got his start in television on a telecast of an “Alice in Wonderland” production in 1955. Bosley a Broadway veteran at the time of the telecast had already earned a Tony award for his portrayal of Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia in “Fiorello!” Bosely has also appeared in films starring opposite Natalie Wood in “Love with the Proper stranger.”

After playing the famous, loveable Mr. Cunningham, Bosely went to star as the titular character on “Father Dowling Mysteries and Sheriff Amos Tupper on “Murder, she wrote.”

In 2005, Bosley revived his role as Mr. Cunningham, if only as a voice, for the popular animated series, “Family Guy.”

Bosley’s death comes just after another TV icon, Barbara Billingsley, passed away. It’s been a sad time for the television industry and fans, after the recent deaths of people like Stephen J. Cannell and Tony Curtis.

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