Eddie Mekka Dead at 69; Remembered for His Portrayal of Carmine on Laverne and Shirley

Photo courtesy of Eddie Mekka’s Facebook page.

Eddie Mekka, who found international fame playing Carmine “The Big Ragoo” Ragusa, on the hit series “Laverne & Shirley,” from 1976 through 1983, died Saturday at his home in Newhall, California. He was 69. No details on his cause of death were made immediately available.

Mekka’s death was announced on his Facebook Fan page.

“It is with deep regret that we share with you the passing of our beloved Eddie Mekka. Eddie passed away peacefully in his Newhall, California home on Saturday, November 27, 2021. He was 69 years old. At this time, we do ask that all media inquiries be withheld during his family’s time of grief and mourning.

The actor also found fame on Broadway earning a Tony nomination in 1975 for his lead role in “The Lieutenant”.

He appeared in 150 episodes of Laverne and Shirley as the love interest of Shirley Feeney.

Michael McKean, who Lenny Kosnowski on the show, Tweeted a tribute to his former castmate.

Scott Baio, who played Chachi Arcola on Happy Days Tweeted his remembrance of Mekka.

Cindy Williams Tweeted on Mekka’s passing noting that he was a “A world-class talent who could do it all.”


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