Celebrity News January 29, 2023
Lisa Loring, Original Wednesday Addams, Dies at 64
Yet another former child star has died in 2023 — this time, it is Lisa Loring, the original Wednesday Addams.
Her death on Saturday, at 64, comes just as the character she played on '60s TV has enjoyed a phenomenal resurgence via Jenna Ortega's portrayal in the hit series "Wednesday."
Loring's passing was reported by her close friend Laurie Jacobson on Facebook Sunday. Jacobson reported, "It is with great sadness that I report the death of our friend, Lisa Loring. 4 Days ago she suffered a massive 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 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," she went on. "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."
Born Lisa Ann DeCinces in the Marshall Islands on February 16, 1958, the future TV star grew up on Hawaii and in L.A.
She was already modeling as a toddler, and made her TV debut on "Dr. Kildare" (1964).
Playing Wednesday Addams was only her second acting role, lasting from 1964-1966. Though the show was not a first-run smash, it became beloved in reruns over the years as one of the most out-there and whimsical mainstream series in TV history.
On one episode, Loring performed a Twist-like dance called the Droop, encouraging her spooky, altogether ooky family's butler Lurch (the late Ted Cassidy) to give it a try. The famous dance was referenced by Ortega on Season 1 of "Wednesday," a scene that went superviral, often paired with the Lady Gaga deep cut "Bloody Mary," which entered the Billboard Hot 100 over 10 years after its release.
After "Addams," Loring's acting career was spotty. She made just two more guest appearances on TV before taking a 10-year break. She reprised Wednesday on TV for a Halloween special in 1977.
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Her second most famous role came in 1980, when she was hired to play vixen Cricket Montgomery on "As the World Turns" (1980-1983).
She otherwise made a few more guest appearances and took small roles in low-budget features, her last in 2015.
Loring's personal life was tumultuous, and was exploited for publicity while she acting on "As the World Turns." She'd wed her childhood love at 15, had given birth at 16, and soon after had divorced. Her second union, also short-lived, produced her second child.
But it was Loring's third marriage that made her a prototype for future reality stars. Working as a makeup artist on a porn film, Loring met actor Jerry Butler. They were married, and spent years publicly dissecting her dissatisfaction with his continuing career in adult films and his inability to quit.
The divorced in 1992 (Butler died in 2018), and Loring wed and divorced one more time.
In recent years, Loring was a warmly received participant at autograph shows, where she as known to thoroughly enjoy meeting fans of her iconic character.
She is survived by her two children.
With Loring's death, the entire original cast of "The Addams Family" is gone, save for Gomez himself — John Astin is still with us at 92.