Actor Tom Bosley, known to most by his role on Happy Days,  died of heart failure on Tuesday. He was 83 years old when he died, and had been battling lung cancer. 

Bosley spent 50 years as a television actor and had appearances and starring roles on dozens of shows, yet to his many fans he will be remembered as Howard Cunningham from Happy Days. He spent 11 seasons on the hit show that began in 1974.

Bosley’s career began in the 1950’s when he took the role of New York City Mayor LaGuardia in the musical Fiorello. After that he spent many years in television. Prior to his days as the TV dad he had regular appearances on shows such as Love American Style, The Debbie Reynolds Show and much more.

His career did not end when Happy Days went off the air. He went on to appear several times on the Love Boat series and have a co-starring role in many episodes of Murder She Wrote.  He then spent four years as the title character in Father Dowling Mysteries.

Bosley’s voice was heard throughout many commercials and and animated programs.

His former co-stars from Happy Days spoke about what a loving husband and father he had been through the years.  Former TV son Ron Howard described Bosley as the central figure in Happy Days, who led by example and made everyone laugh. Henry Winkler, The Fonz, said he considered the man a family member both on and off the stage.

According to his wife Patricia Carr, Bosley had been diagnosed with lung cancer five months ago and had just undergone chemotherapy when he suffered the heart failure.