Lisa Loring, best known as the first actress to play Wednesday Addams on the original sitcom ‘The Addams Family,’ has died aged 64.
Loring “passed away Saturday surrounded by her family,” longtime agent Chris Carbaugh told CNN in a statement Monday.
“She brought to life one of the most iconic characters in Hollywood history who is still celebrated today,” Carbaugh said. “Lisa loved sharing her memories and meeting all of her fans around the world.”
The former child star was a mother and grandmother, her rep added, saying, “She will be greatly missed.”
Laurie Jacobson, Loring’s friend, also reported her death on Facebook, saying she had “suffered a severe stroke brought on by smoking and high blood pressure.”
“She had been on life support for 3 days. Yesterday her family made the difficult decision to remove her and she passed away last night,” Jacobson wrote. “She’s ingrained in the tapestry that is pop culture and in our hearts forever as Wednesday Addams.”
Following news of her death, fans flocked to social media to pay their respects, with one person writing on Twitter: “Farewell to Lisa Loring, the person who DEFINED Wednesday Addams at a time when she was only a scowling newspaper cartoon.”
Loring was the pale, pigtailed Wednesday model after being cast in the sitcom ‘The Addams Family’ in 1964. She took on the role at the age of six and played the death-obsessed character until until the show ends two years. later.
In 1977, she appeared as Wednesday Sr. in the TV movie “Halloween with the New Addams Family”.
Loring’s deadpan delivery of the character, based on Charles Addams’ New Yorker cartoons, paved the way for other actresses, including Christina Ricci, who starred as Wednesday in the hit film ‘The Addams Family. from 1991 and its sequel, “Addams Family Values.” .”
Jenna Ortega said her version of the pop culture icon was also inspired by Loring, following the premiere of Tim Burton’s Netflix horror comedy ‘Wednesday’ last year.
“I paid tribute to Lisa Loring, the first Wednesday Addams. I did a bit of her shuffle that she does,” Ortega said during an appearance on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” in December.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Loring was born Lisa Ann DeCinces in the Marshall Islands and got her stage name when she started modeling at age 3.
After her Wednesday stint on “The Addams Family,” Loring joined Phyllis Diller’s sitcom “The Pruitts of Southampton.” She then landed a recurring role on “As the World Turns,” playing Cricket Montgomery.
His acting credits also include the shows “The Girl From UNCLE”, “Fantasy Island”, and “Barnaby Jones”.