(HARRISON COUNTY, Ind.) -- Erin Moran, best known for playing Joanie Cunningham on the hit sitcom Happy Days and its spinoff, Joanie Loves Chachi, has died. She was 56.
The Harrison County Sheriffs Department in Harrison County, Indiana confirmed to ABC News that on Saturday, it received a 911 call about an unresponsive female. When the responders arrived, they determined that the woman, identified as Erin Marie Moran Fleischmann, was deceased. An autopsy is pending.
Moran, who had appeared in movies and on TV shows like The Courtship of Eddies' Father and My Three Sons, was cast as Joanie Cunningham, the younger sister of Ron Howard's Richie Cunningham, in 1974. She played the role on Happy Days until 1982, when she and Scott Baio's character, Chachi Arcola, left to star in the spinoff Joanie Loves Chachi. That show was canceled in 1983, and Moran returned to Happy Days for its final season.
After Happy Days, Moran made guest appearances in shows like The Love Boat, Murder, She Wrote and Diagnosis: Murder. In 2007, she appeared on the reality show Scott Baio Is 45 and Single as herself, and in 2008, she was a contestant on VH1's Celebrity Fit Club.
In recent years, Moran had reportedly fallen on hard times, and was said to be living in a trailer park, and then in a series of motels.
Her Happy Days co-star Henry Winkler, who played The Fonz, tweeted, "OH Erin... now you will finally have the peace you wanted so badly here on earth ...Rest In It serenely now.. too soon."
Ron Howard tweeted, "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."
Don Most, who played Richie's pal Ralph Malph on the show, tweeted, "So incredibly sad to hear about Erin. A wonderful, sweet, caring, talented woman.I can't really comprehend this right now.Very painful loss."
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Anson Williams, who played Richie's pal Potsie on the show, said in a statement, "Erin was a person who made everyone around her feel better. She truly cared about others first, a true angel. I will miss her so much, but know that she is in God’s hands. RIP sweet angel.”
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