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Laverne & Shirley star David Lander dies at 73 after a decades-long battle with multiple sclerosis

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Laverne & Shirley star David Lander dies at 73 after a decades-long battle with multiple sclerosis

Veteran character actor David Lander, most famous for his role of Andrew ‘Squiggy’ Squiggman on classic 70s TV series Laverne & Shirley, has passed away.

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According to a report from TMZ, Lander died on Friday night at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California, after a 37-year battle with multiple sclerosis.

He was 73 years of age. 

Rest in peace: Actor David Lander, most famous for his role of Andrew ‘Squiggy’ Squiggman on classic 70s TV series Laverne & Shirley, has passed away

David’s wife, actress Kathy Fields, told the outlet that both she and their daughter Natalie were by his side at the time of his passing.  

Lander was interested in acting from an early age, and he landed his first screen credit at the age of 22 in the television series Department S in 1969.

He went on to appear in several high-profile 70 sitcoms, including The Bob Newhart Show, Rhoda and Happy Days. 

The role of his lifetime, however, was as the funny-voiced Squiggy on Laverne & Shirley, which ran from 1976 until 1983. 

David appeared in 156 episodes throughout the series run.

The show starred Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams as the titular pair of roommates, who often squared off opposite Lander’s character and that of Michael McKean, who played Lenny Kosnowski. 

The role of his lifetime: David's funny-voiced Squiggy was featured on Laverne & Shirley, which starred Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams as the titular pair of roommates, who often squared off opposite Lander’s character and that of Michael McKean

The role of his lifetime: David’s funny-voiced Squiggy was featured on Laverne & Shirley, which starred Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams as the titular pair of roommates, who often squared off opposite Lander’s character and that of Michael McKean

McKean and Lander actually met in college, at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where they developed their two iconic characters.

In addition to their roles on Laverne & Shirley, the pair appeared in Steven Spielberg’s film 1941 in 1979 as well as Robert Zemeckis’s Used Cars one year later.

They remained friends and coworkers, also lending their voices to animated TV series Oswald beginning in 2001. 

Longtime friends: McKean and Lander actually met in college, at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, and went on to collaborate in several projects

Longtime friends: McKean and Lander actually met in college, at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, and went on to collaborate in several projects

David went on to many other TV and film appearances, including titles such as The Love Boat, Matlock, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Married… With Children, Star Trek: The Next Generation and many more. 

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Later notable appearances included an uncredited bit part in A League Of Their Own, which was directed by his prior costar Marshall, as well as playing principal Squiggy in 2000’s Scary Movie.

Lander also enjoyed a career as a voice actor, lending his talents to the Garfield Show, SpongeBob SquarePants, the Simpsons and many more.

Veteran actor: David went onto many other TV and film appearances, including titles such as The Love Boat, Matlock, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Married… With Children and more; seen here with Laverne & Shirley costars including McKean and Williams in January 2019

Veteran actor: David went onto many other TV and film appearances, including titles such as The Love Boat, Matlock, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Married… With Children and more; seen here with Laverne & Shirley costars including McKean and Williams in January 2019

Family man: David is seen here on Instagram, at his daughter Natalie's wedding

Family man: David is seen here on Instagram, at his daughter Natalie’s wedding

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