Linda Purl / Instagram
Fans of the Happy Days sitcom remember Fonzie as the tough guy, but the actress who played his on-screen girlfriend, Linda Purl, has revealed that she remembered seeing a softer side of Henry Winkler when he met a young, terminally ill fan.
Purl remembered when a terminally ill boy had one wish through the Make a Wish Foundation: to meet his hero, the Fonz. According to Purl, Winkler went all out to make the little boy’s dreams come true.
“Our habit was to get out of costume and makeup, completely put on our robes and our schleppy things, go over to the commissary, have dinner together and go back into hair and makeup. Henry would get out of the pompadour, out of the jacket. He would get into whatever he’d come to work in that day. This little boy was coming, and he was going to have dinner [with us]… And Henry comes in, but not as Henry but as the Fonz,” Purl told Fox News.
Purl thought it was silly that Winkler would come in as Fonz and not himself, but it was for a very important reason.
“Henry knew that this young boy was not coming to meet Henry. He wanted to meet the Fonz. And Henry was very clear on the difference between the two,” Purl said.
Purl later learned that Winkler had arranged to fly out the young boy’s family and they stayed for several days.
Purl called Winkler “generous and compassionate.” At one point she said that his kindness made her cry.
“That’s Henry,” she said.
What a wonderful memory!