Marion Ramsey, Broadway Actress and 'Police Academy' Star, Dies at 73

Marion Ramsey
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Marion Ramsey

She was best known for her portrayal of Officer Laverne Hooks in the '80s comedy franchise.

Marion Ramsey, an actress best known for her portrayal of Officer Laverne Hooks in the Police Academy franchise, has died. She was 73.

Ramsey died early Thursday morning in her Los Angeles home, her management team at Roger Paul Inc. confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter. A cause of death was not provided.

Born in Philadelphia on May 10, 1947, Ramsey appeared on The Jeffersons in 1976 and later was a regular on Bill Cosby's sketch show, Cos. She played Hooks in the Police Academy franchise through Police Academy 6: City Under Siege (1989). Her other screen work includes a role on SyFy's cult TV movies Lavalantula (2015) and its 2016 sequel, 2 Lava 2 Lantula!

Known for her unique, soft-spoken voice, Ramsey also did voice work on animated series Robot Chicken and The Addams Family. 

Ramsey also starred in the pre-Broadway production of Miss Moffatt opposite Bette Davis. Broadway roles include Harold Prince's Grind, Eubiel, Hello Dolly and a co-starring stint in two L.A. productions of Little Shop of Horrors.

Ramsey was an advocate for AIDS awareness and performed in an annual L.A. fundraising event developed by television star Sheryl Lee Ralph called Divas Simply Singing. It has raised millions of dollars to benefit AIDS awareness and prevention.

In a statement to THR, Roger Paul Inc. wrote, "Marion carried with her a kindness and permeating light that instantly filled a room upon her arrival. The dimming of her light is already felt by those who knew her well. We will miss her and always love her."