Linda Purl, born September 2, 1955) played the recurring role of Gloria, Richie's steady girlfriend, in Season 1 of Happy Days, and then returned to the series in Season 10 to play the role of Ashley Pfister, a single divorcee and mother who becomes Fonzie's steady girlfriend on the series during that season. Linda, in one of her most recent notable roles, played the role of Barbara Pelt on the HBO original series True Blood.

Life and career[edit | edit source]

Born in Greenwich, Connecticut, to chemical-industry executive Raymond Charles Arthur Purl (1915-2015) and Marshelline "Marshie" Purl. She has a sister, Mara. Linda was raised in Japan, becoming the only foreigner to train at the Toho Geino Academy. At the Imperial Theatre in Tokyo, she played the role of "Louis" in "The King and I" (in Japanese), "Bet" in "Oliver" and the role of "Helen Keller" in "The Miracle Worker". She then went to England to study under Marguerite Beale, before returning to the United States to study at the Lee Strasberg Institute and, later, with Robert Lewis.

Her stage credits include: The Broadway musical, "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer"; "Getting and Spending", which ran on Broadway at the Helen Hayes Theatre. Linda played the part of Barbara Pelt on the 2008-14 HBO TV series True Blood. Making her debut on the episode "Whatever I Am, You Made Me"" (episode #3) in the series' fifth season, Linda plays the role of the werewolf mother of Debbie Pelt. Looking for answers relating to her daughter's disappearance, Barbara is a guest starring actress who appears once more on the subsequent episode, "We’ll Meet Again" (episode #4), in the same season.

Selected filmography[edit | edit source]

Films[edit | edit source]

  • Homeland (2011)
  • Lie to Me (2010)

Television[edit | edit source]

  • True Blood (2012)
  • The Office (2009-2011)
  • Criminal Minds (2010)
  • Desperate Housewives (2010)
  • Bones (2009)

External links[edit | edit source]

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