While Tom Bosley was just playing a fictional dad to the cast of “Happy Days,” that didn’t stop him from giving some pretty stellar father-like advice over the years.
Bosley played Howard Cunningham on the popular 1970s sitcom “Happy Days.” This means that he was the father to Chuck, Richie, and Joanie.
A Father Outside of ‘Happy Days’
However, over the years, the cast of “Happy Days” had grown extremely close. Bosley became more of an off-screen dad too. He helped the cast with something you just don’t learn at school or on a television set.
“He saw us all through buying our first houses and had a lot advice on mortgages and real estate. And he was at our first weddings!” Dan Most, who played Ralph Malph on the series, said, according to an interview with Houston Press in 2016.
The advice didn’t stop there. In fact, Tom Bosley introduced something to Most that would change his life forever.
“He introduced me to single malt scotch. Which I am very grateful for! We were at [famed Broadway eatery] Sardi’s, and he saw I was ordering regular Scotch, and told me I couldn’t have that! He especially liked Glenfiddich and advised me on what to get. I’ve never gone back since!” Most said.
When he wasn’t attending weddings and helping people with real estate, Tom Bosley was continuing his acting career. He had a role in “Father Dowling Mysteries.” He was also common in “Murder, She Wrote.” Most notably, Bosley earned a 1960 Tony Award for Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical for “Fiorello!”
He was also one of two characters that appeared in all 255 episodes of “Happy Days.”
Tom Bosley and Ron Howard
Unfortunately, Tom Bosley passed away in 2010 from a staph infection and a battle with lung cancer.
When he passed, many of his former co-stars rushed to praise the kind of actor and man Bosley was.
“He was our television father on the sound stage, but a father figure in real life. He was a loving husband, a doting father and a fantastic grandfather … will be so missed but never forgotten by the Winkler Family or the world,” Henry Winkler, The Fonz on “Happy Days,” said to according to BBC.
Ron Howard, who played his son on “Happy Days,” shared similar testaments.
“Tom’s insight, talent, strength of character and comic timing made him a vital central figure in the Happy Days experience. A great father and husband, and a wonderful artist, Tom led by example, and made us all laugh while he was doing it. My last conversations with Tom reflected the love of life and peace of mind that he always maintained throughout his full and rewarding life. I miss him already,” Howard said.
He was a father in real life as well. He was married to actress Patricia Carr and the two had a daughter, Amy Bosley.