Modern Family's Fred Willard's wife Mary Willard has died aged 71, it has been revealed.
The couple had been married for over 50 years and had one daughter Hope Willard, 49.
Los Angeles entertainment reporter George Pennochio posted on his Facebook about the sad news.
He wrote: A TOAST TO MARY!
We were just emailing each other yesterday afternoon.
Today, I learned my friend, Mary Willard, died unexpectedly last night at the age of 71. She was the loving wife of comedian Fred Willard but Mary was also a firecracker, full of love and laughs. She was kind, generous and supportive of her friends and her causes. May she Rest In Peace.
Experienced actor Willard, 78, played Frank Dunphy on Modern Family father of Phil, Ty Burrell's character.
He was hit with a sex scandal in 2012 when he was arrested on suspicion of engaging in a misdemeanor lewd act inside an adult theater in Santa Monica – however no charges were ever filed.
His devoted wife stayed loyal to him and she was popular with their family and friends.
Their friend Peter Marshall's wife Laurie wrote on social media: "We've been stripped of such an extreme joy and that joy was Mary. I know Hope will continue her legacy of causing happiness in droves, because she is Mary's. We love you Fred, Hope, Freddy, and Mitch."
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