'Happy Days' star Al Molinaro dies at 96

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Al Molinaro, Big Al of 'Happy Days,' Dies at 96

By Variety

Al Molinaro, who played the beloved chef on "Happy Days," died on Thursday. He was 96.

Molinaro portrayed Big Al Delvecchio, the owner of Arnold's drive-in, in the classic TV series. He also appeared in the "Happy Days" spinoff "Joani Loves Chachi."

His son, Michael, confirmed the actor's death to TMZ and said that Molinaro suffered from bad gall stones.

See more of Molinaro on the iconic show:

20 PHOTOS
Al Molinaro
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'Happy Days' star Al Molinaro dies at 96
UNITED STATES - AUGUST 14: HAPPY DAYS - 'Sweet Sixteen' 10/17/78 Al Molinaro (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 26: HAPPY DAYS - 'Gallery' 1981 Al Molinaro (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 01: HAPPY DAYS - 'American Musical' 5/26/81 Anson Williams, Al Molinaro, Henry Winkler (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 02: HAPPY DAYS - 'Hello, Tough Guy' 12/15/81 Henry Winkler, Al Molinaro (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 02: HAPPY DAYS - 'Just a Piccalo' 11/24/81 Scott Baio, Al Molinaro, Phil Silvers (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - JANUARY 06: HAPPY DAYS - 'Home Movies' 10/6/81 Ted McGinley, Anson Williams, Erin Moran, Henry Winkler, Scott Baio, Linda Goodfriend, Al Molinaro, Marion Ross, Tom Bosley (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 25: HAPPY DAYS - 'Grandma Nussbaum' 1/19/82 Henry Winkler, Al Molinaro, Scott Baio (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 25: HAPPY DAYS - 'Love and Marriage' 3/23/82 Scott Baio, Ellen Travolta, Al Molinaro, Erin Moran (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 25: HAPPY DAYS - 'Love and Marriage' 3/23/82 Al Molinaro, Ellen Travolta (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 09: HAPPY DAYS - 'Gallery' 1981 Ted McGinley, Cathy Silvers, Anson Williams, Al Molinaro, Scott Baio, Tom Bosley, Henry Winkler, Erin Moran, Lynda Goodfriend, Marion Ross (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 11: HAPPY DAYS - 'If You Knew Rosa' 1/6/81David Paymer, Extra, Al Molinaro, Tom Bosley (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 05: HAPPY DAYS - 'The Mechanic' 12/4/79 Al Molinaro, Henry Winkler (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 25: HAPPY DAYS - 'Poobah Doo Dah' 1/26/82 Henry Winkler, Al Molinaro (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 05: HAPPY DAYS - 'The Hucksters' 2/5/80 Tom Bosley, Marion Ross, Henry Winkler, Extra, Al Molinaro, Anson Williams, Donny Most (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 05: HAPPY DAYS - 'If You Knew Rosa' 1/6/81Al Molinaro, Nancy Marvy (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 03: HAPPY DAYS - 'Joanie's Dilemma' 1/15/1980 Al Molinaro, Donny Most, Toni Lebell (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - AUGUST 14: HAPPY DAYS - 'My Favorite Orkan' 2/28/78 Al Molinaro (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - AUGUST 14: HAPPY DAYS - 'Gallery' 2/28/78 Marion Ross, Scott Baio, Lynda Goodfriend, Donny Most, Ron Howard, Erin Moran, Anson Williams, Tom Bosley, Henry Winkler, Al Molinaro (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 03: HAPPY DAYS - 'Gallery' 1979 Marion Ross, Donny Most, Anson Williams, Henry Winkler, Al Molinaro, Lynda Goodfriend, Ron Howard, Tom Bosley, Scott Baio, Erin Moran (Photo by ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images)
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Younger audiences may recognize Molinaro as Al from Weezer's "Buddy Holly" music video, which was set in the "Happy Days" drive-in and featured edited footage of Fonzie (Henry Winkler) dancing with girls.

READ MORE: Reese Witherspoon, Jeffrey Katzenberg Honored by American Cinematheque

Born in Kenosha, Wisconsin, Molinaro also appeared in "The Odd Couple," "Punky Brewster" and "Step by Step."

He is survived by his wife, Betty and his son Michael.

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