She played Ashley in Happy Days. See Linda Purl now at 67.

With her many notable roles over the years, chances are that a few generations of television lovers would recognize her instantly Linda Purl— but for which character, probably depends on when you grew up. That is, fans of Happy Days will know her best in the show’s tenth season as Ashley, Fonzie’s girlfriend. (This came after she played Gloria, who was dating Richie, in Season 2.) Purl is also known for being attorney Ben Matlock’s daughter, Charlene Matlockand Helene, Pam’s mother and Michael’s girlfriend The office.

These days, Purl is still acting, and she’s embarked on a new venture with her boyfriend, who happens to be a TV star himself. Read on to learn more about Purl’s life today at 67.

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Linda Purl at the Publicists Guild of America Awards in 1981
Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

Purl has consistently worked as an actor, in television shows, films and on stage since the 1970s. Most recently she had roles in the TV series Designated Survivor, Chopand General Hospitaland the movies Broken Halo and Paul’s promise. Earlier this year, she appeared in the play Catch Me If You Can during a UK tour. Her partner, the actor, played in the play Patrick Duffy. The two also performed the show love letters together.

Linda Purl at the 20th anniversary celebration of the National Organization for Women in 1986
Ron Galella, Ltd/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

Besides acting, Purl is a jazz singer. She released her latest album, Give love a chancein 2020.

“Both my parents are to blame,” Purl told Broadway World of her love of music in 2021. “Her turntable was always on either Broadway or jazz. There was a lot of it [Antônio Carlos] jobim. There was a lot Rosemary Clooney. There were a lot of Broadway chestnuts. I grew up in Japan. My parents fully embraced life in Asia. They lived there for 30 years. But the music was a real connection to her American self. And so my sister and I were the recipients of that.”

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Purl has been married four times, including to Desi Arnaz Jr.the son of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. She has one child with her third husband, producer and screenwriter Alexander Kary.

Purl is currently in a relationship with Patrick Duffybest known for his starring role as Bobby Ewing Dallas. The two have been together since 2020. In a joint interview in 2021 with studio 10the couple explained that they almost worked together on the series in the late ’70s young Pioneersbut then Duffy was offered Dallas. “We missed our chance for 40 years, but then we made it up to us,” Duffy said.

They shared they linked an event prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, but once lockdown began, they got to know each other better via video chat. Finally, Duffy blurted out “I love you” to Purl while signing off. Now, of course, they are together without computer screens.

Purl and Duffy have performed together on stage, but they’re also collaborating on a new venture that couldn’t be further from everything in show business. The couple founded Duffy’s Dough, a company that sells sourdough starter kits that contain a dehydrated sourdough starter made from one that the actor’s mother received 70 years earlier. Purl encouraged Duffy to share the appetizer with others. In conversation with personsPurl said that starting the company was “eye-opening, so joyful and so interesting.” She played Ashley in Happy Days. See Linda Purl now at 67.

Sarah Y. Kim

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