With sadness we must report that film and Broadway actress Marion Ramsey has passed away, the news was first reported by Deadline citing her management team at Roger Paul Inc. Ramsey was best known for appearing as the soft-spoken Officer Laverne Hooks in six of the Police Academy movies in the 1980s. No cause of death was reported at the time of publication but the trade notes that Ramsey had been ill for a few days. Ramsey was 73 at the time of her passing. We send our deepest sympathies to her family and friends during this tragic time.
Born May 10, 1947 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Ramsey's career began on the stage where she starred in the original Broadway run of Hello, Dolly!, appearing in the Broadway version from 1964 to 1970 and later the touring production that same year. Her other credits on the stage included Eubie!, Rock 'N Roll! The First 5,000 Years, Grind, and Uptown...It's Hot!
Ramsey's role in the Police Academy series would start with the first film where her character, at the time Cadet Laverne Hooks, was introduced. The recurring gag with Hooks was her gentle and meek nature including mousy disposition which often resulted in her exploding in a scene to yell at someone. She would reprise her role in all five of the sequels, Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment, 3: Back in Training, 4: Citizens on Patrol, etc., starring opposite Steve Guttenberg, Bubba Smith, David Graf, Michael Winslow, Bruce Mahler, and Bobcat Goldthwait. Ramsey even reprised her part for an episode of Robot Chicken.
Her career in film and television wasn't limited to this screwball comedy series though, appearing on the sketch/variety shows Keep On Truckin' and Cos, plus appearances on The Jeffersons, The Nanny, Beverly Hills, 90210, MacGyver, and Modern Family. Recently she appeared in the 2915 SYFY original movie Lavalantula, starring alongside her Police Academy co-stars Steve Guttenberg and Michael Winslow. She reprised her part for its 2016 sequel, 2 Lava 2 Lantula, as well. Her finale credit was the 2018 comedy/drama When I Sing.
To further cement her role as a multi-hyphenate performer, Ramsey also worked as a singer and songwriter, penning songs for soul singer Pat Hodges and female group The Sweet Inspirations.
According to the Hollywood trade, Ramsey is survived by three brothers. May she rest in peace.
(Photo by Bobby Bank/Getty Images)