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Lisa Loring, original Wednesday Addams actress in classic ‘Addams Family’ series, dead at 64

Her daughter, Vanessa Foumberg, confirmed the news, saying she died quietly with both her daughters holding her hands.

Loring’s friend Laurie Jacobson stated on Facebook that Loring had suffered a huge stroke caused by smoking and high blood pressure four days before and was on life support.

She was on life support for three days. Her family made the tough choice to remove it yesterday, and she died last night, Jacobson wrote.

It is with great sadness that I report the death of our friend, Lisa Loring. 4 Days ago she suffered a massive stroke…

Posted by Laurie Jacobson on Sunday, 29 January 2023

Loring was born in the Marshall Islands in 1958, the daughter of US Navy personnel. She was born in Hawaii and raised there before relocating to Los Angeles with her mom.

At the age of six, she was cast in The Addams Family, becoming the first actress to portray Wednesday Addams, the youngest child of the grotesque yet lovable Addams Family.

Wednesday was a nice kid with a dark and disturbing side, as depicted by Loring: her favorite toy was a decapitated Marie Antoinette doll, and she bred pet spiders.

Loring afterwards recalled warmly his time on the famous TV show. It seemed like a true family: you couldn’t have selected a finer cast and crew. Carolyn Jones, John Astin, Gomez, and Morticia were like her parents. Loring stated in a 2017 interview that they were fantastic.

The Addams Family aired for three seasons and is still in syndication today. It is considered a pop cultural classic. Loring also appeared in the 1977 television film Halloween with the New Addams Family.

Loring continued to appear on television, including in the Phyllis Diller comedy The Pruitts of Southampton and as Cricket Montgomery on the television serial opera As the World Turns from 1980 to 1983. Her acting career, however, halted, and she afterwards mainly acted in low-budget horror flicks.

Her personal life was similarly turbulent. Her heroin addiction destroyed her profession.

Loring was married four times, the first for a year when she was 15 years old. Her marriage to adult film star Jerry Butler was turbulent, and they separated in 1992.

Despite her personal difficulties, Jacobson remembers Loring as a beautiful, caring, and loving mother of two. And she’ll be remembered for creating the character of Wednesday Addams, who has now become a pop cultural figure.

Later, in the 1990s, Christina Ricci played Wednesday Addams in two successful live-action movies. This gave the character a new audience. Wednesday has also featured in a number of TV shows, animated films, and a Broadway musical, as well as being the inspiration for several Halloween costumes and cosplays.

And Loring’s death comes at a time when Wednesday Addams has come back to the forefront of popular culture. The Netflix show Wednesday was one of the biggest TV hits of the year around the world.

Even though later versions of Wednesday are older and more gothic than the little girl Loring played, Wednesday actress Jenny Ortega said that Loring’s first performance was an inspiration for the series.

Ortega paid her respects to Lisa Loring, the original Wednesday Addams, and performed a little bit of the shuffle that she does, Ortega told Jimmy Fallon, referring to a famous scene in which Wednesday dances with butler Lurch.

As Wednesday Addams, Jacobson wrote, she is forever woven into the fabric of pop culture and in people’s hearts.

Lisa’s legacy in show business is enormous. And the legacy she leaves for her family and friends—a wealth of humour, compassion, and love—will live on in their minds for a long time, she added, describing herself as “a lot of fun.”

Butch Patrick, a co-star on the equally macabre show The Munsters, also paid homage to his pal.

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. 🙏🙏🙏☹️☹️☹️❤️❤️❤️

Posted by Butch Patrick on Sunday, 29 January 2023

Loring was one of the few cast members left from the first season of The Addams Family. The sole remaining cast member is John Astin, who portrayed Loring’s on-screen father, Gomez Addams. He is presently 92 years old.

Lisa Loring, rest in peace. You’ll be remembered for inventing the unforgettable part of Wednesday Addams; we’ve always enjoyed watching the iconic Addams Family TV program.

Please share this article with your best Lisa Loring memories!

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