Lisa Loring, Wednesday on TV’s ‘Addams Family,’ Dies at 64

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The cast of the original TV series, The Addams Family

Lisa Loring, who as a child actor portrayed Wednesday Addams on the 1960s TV sitcom The Addams Family, died Saturday (Jan. 28, 2023). The news of her passing, at age 64, was shared on Jan. 29 on Facebook by her friend Laurie Jacobson, who indicated that the actress had suffered a massive stroke four days earlier, brought on by smoking and high blood pressure.

Jacobson noted that Loring “had been on life support for three days. Yesterday, her family made the difficult decision to remove it and she passed last night. She is embedded in the tapestry that is pop culture and in our hearts always as Wednesday Addams.

“Beautiful, kind, a loving mother, Lisa’s legacy in the world of entertainment is huge. And the legacy for her family and friends — a wealth of humor, affection and love will long play in our memories. RIP, Lisa. Damn, girl…you were a ton of fun.”

Shortly after the news broke, fellow child star Paul Petersen, who came to prominence on The Donna Reed Show, shared a story about Loring. “Lisa was a kid actor and a long-standing, if difficult friend. No less than Geraldo Rivera famously said of her beauty, ‘She is easy on the eyes.’

“One night, well after midnight, Lisa was sitting on my living room couch, fresh out of a shower and wearing a nightgown when my wife got home from work…the wife I had not called to tell that we had a houseguest. Rana froze at the front door and glared at the innocent Lisa Loring. Then she said, ‘You better be a kid actress.’

“When I told this story to Danny Bonaduce on his radio show he laughed at the tale and said, ‘Know what my wife would’ve said?’

“You better be inflatable!”

Loring was six years old when she was cast as the pint-sized daughter on The Addams Family, from 1964-1966. The black comedy series, based on the Charles Addams cartoons, starred John Astin and Carolyn Jones as Gomez Addams and his wife, Morticia, as a macabre family at odds with the rest of their town. The program also featured Jackie Coogan as Uncle Fester, Blossom Rock as Grandmama, Ken Weatherwax as older brother Pugsley Addams, and Ted Cassidy as the family butler, Lurch. At the time of Loring’s death, Astin, at 92, is the only member of the cast still alive.

Watch Loring do what’s become known as “The Wednesday Dance” on The Addams Family

Butch Patrick, who starred as Eddie Munster in the sitcom of the same era, wrote, “Very sorry to hear of my dear friend Lisa Loring’s passing. We were very close and worked together often. I know she was very weak. I was in her company just a few weeks ago. Godspeed my friend. 🙏🙏🙏☹️☹️☹️❤️❤️❤️”

Loring was born Lisa Ann DeCinces on Feb. 16, 1958, in the Marshall Islands, the daughter of parents who both served in the U.S. Navy. She moved with her divorced mother to Los Angeles and began modeling at age three. She had a modest acting career after The Addams Family, and was married and divorced four times. The character she played has received a resurgence thanks to the 2022 hit Netflix series Wednesday.

Related: What were we listening to when The Addams Family debuted in 1964?

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  1. Paul
    #1 Paul 30 January, 2023, 00:50

    Rest in peace Lisa and thanks for the memories of my youth, Godspeed and God Bless

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  2. Dragyn
    #2 Dragyn 30 January, 2023, 20:11

    One of my favorite shows, even now. Lisa has gone Home, and is back to full health, reunited with Morticia, Uncle Fester, and all. RIP, girl, you earned it.

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