David L. Lander is best known for his portrayal of Squiggy, the greasy neighbor with
the spit curl hair in the 1970's hit television series "Laverne and Shirley."
A talented comic writer and actor, Lander has appeared in the films Who Framed
Roger Rabbit?, A League of Their Own, Used Cars and The Man
with One Red Shoe.
In 1999, David announced to the public that for 15 years he had been hiding the fact
that he had multiple sclerosis (MS). David wrote a book, Fall Down Laughing: How
Squiggy Caught Multiple Sclerosis and Didn't Tell Nobody, chronicling his life story
hiding MS from the world.
David L. Lander was born in 1947 in Brooklyn, New York, the youngest son of two schoolteachers
working in the New York City school system. At the age of ten, David decided he wanted to be
His formal acting training began at age 14 when he attended the High School of Performing Arts in
New York City. He continued his studies at Carnegie Tech and NYU. After college, he moved to
Hollywood, where his first showbiz job was writing for TV on a short-lived variety show called
ROMP! Next, David found himself working at a telephone answering service where he was discovered
by a radio producer who liked his sense of humor and his talent for voice imitations.
David was given an on-the-air audition with The Credibility Gap, a satirical radio show based on the
news of the day. It was with The Gap that David and Michael McKean first performed Lenny and Squiggy
before a live audience. One of the people in the audience was Penny Marshall, who had just sold a new
show to ABC-TV titled Laverne and Shirley. She convinced Michael and David to perform at one of her
parties, where her brother, Garry Marshall, saw their act and asked them to try the characters out on
the show. Lenny and Squiggy appeared in more than two hundred episodes during the show's seven year
run on ABC (1976-1983). Laverne and Shirley can still be seen in syndication worldwide.
David has appeared in feature films, including: Who Framed Roger Rabbit, 1941, Used Cars, The Man
with One Red Shoe, A League of Their Own, Scary Movie and Say It Isn't So. He is also very active
doing voice-overs for radio, television and in animation, including the animated series Oswald, Jungle
Cubs and 101 Dalmatians.
David has guest-starred in more than thirty television shows, and has been a recurring character
on David Lynch's Twin Peaks. He also starred in Lynch's only sitcom, On The Air. In addition,
David has made appearances on television series such as The Simpsons, The Nanny, Family Matters,
Dream On, Saturday Night Live, Matlock, Head of the Class, Highway to Heaven,
Father Dowling, Simon and Simon, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Married with Children,
and L.A. Heat. David has been featured on the hit TV soap opera, The Bold and the Beautiful, and
on the hit TV shows Sabrina The Teenage Witch, Mad About You and Arli$$. He was also in
Family Reunion, an ABC movie of the week in which he played all eleven members of a family; and he has
appeared in the USA Network series, Pacific Blue.
Ever the baseball fan, David holds the position of Associate Scout for the Seattle Mariners. In the past,
David has scouted for the Anaheim Angels, and in the 1980s, was a part-owner of the minor league club the
Diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) in 1984, David currently maintains a very active schedule
as a spokesperson and advocate for MS and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society (NMSS). David's
autobiographical memoir Fall Down Laughing: How Squiggy Caught Multiple Sclerosis and Didn't Tell
Nobody has appeared on the Los Angeles Times best seller list. In 2000, the NMSS honored David with
an award for Ambassador of the Year.