Eddie Mekka (born June 14, 1952) is an American actor most famous for his role as Carmine "The Big Ragoo" Ragusa on Laverne & Shirley.


Born Rudolph Edward Mekjian in Worcester, Massachusetts, Eddie is the son of Mariam (née Apkarian), a presser, and Vaughn V. Mekjian.[1] He is of Armenian ancestry and a graduate of Burncoat High School.

Early acting workEdit

In the early 1970s, Mekka headed the Worcester County Light Opera in Massachusetts, teaching young people how to sing. After performing on Broadway in The Lieutenant, for which he was nominated for a Tony Award, he then moved to Los Angeles.

Television workEdit

He landed the role of Carmine for Laverne & Shirley in 1976, acting on the series until it was canceled in 1983. His recent television credits include the FOX series 24, The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, FX's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, CBS-TV's The Bold and the Beautiful, and as Detective Murdoch in the Fox television movie Catch Me If You Can. He had a small role in the Penny Marshall-directed 1992 film, A League of Their Own whose credits list him as "Mae's guy in bar."

Stage careerEdit

On stage, he has performed in Hairspray at the Luxor in Las Vegas, NV and in a national tour of Grease with Cindy Williams. Mekka returned to off-Broadway on July 15, 2008, starring in Steve Solomon's long-running comedy My Mother's Italian, My Father's Jewish & I'm In Therapy! at the Westside Theatre.[2] Mekka reunited with his Laverne & Shirley co-star Cindy Williams in a November 2008 regional production of the Renée Taylor-Joseph Bologna comedy play It Had to Be You.[3] In 2008, Mekka wrapped production in the independent film Code Enforcer. He starred opposite Erin Moran of Happy Days. Eddie starred as Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof at the John W. Engeman Theater in Northport, NY, from April 29, 2010, until June 20, 2010.[4]


External linksEdit

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