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Ron Palillo – a veteran actor best known for portraying Horshack on the 1970s sitcom Welcome Back, Kotter – died of a heart attack this morning. He was 63.

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Sources close to the actor confirm that Palillo passed away at his home in Palm Beach, where his body was found by partner Joseph Gramm around 4 a.m. He was later transported by ambulance to a hospital and pronounced dead.

Palillo was a heavy smoker who had been struggling with a cough, but he was otherwise in good health.

A native of Cheshire, Connecticut, Palillo rose to fame by portraying the lovable Arnold Horshack on the series that made John Travola famous. He also appeared on Laverne & Shirley.

Our thoughts go out to Palillo’s loved ones.