Ernest Borgnine dead at 95
Ernest Borgnine’s characters ran the gamut from tough criminals to gentle souls. Those characters live on but the actor has died at the age of 95 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre in Los Angeles.
Ernest Borgnine was born in the United States but left as the age of 2 returning to his mother’s homeland of Italy when his parent’s marriage hit a rough patch. They returned when his parents patched up their marriage and grew up in North Haven, Connecticut.
After high school Borgnine joined the Navy, serving for ten years with one four year break. He wanted no part in the military after World War II. When he returned home his mother suggested that he should become an actor. Her advice began a career that spun the decades starting with parts at the Barter Theatre in Abingdon, Virginia before hitting Broadway in the play Harvey.
In 1951 he shot to stardom in From Here to Eternity with Frank Sinatra. Four years later he appeared in one of his most loved pieces, Marty, winning an Oscar for his performance. On the small screen his role in McHale’s Navy continues to entertain.
His career as a character actor was seen on the stage, small screen and big screen. He appeared in more than 110 films including The Poseidon Adventure and The Dirty Dozen.
Today’s children knew him best as the elderly ex-superhero Mermaidman, in the animated series “SpongeBob SquarePants.” He was Mermaidman from 1999 until last year.
Borgnine was married 5 times. His first wife was Rhoda Kemins (one daghter, Nancee), Katy Juradom, Ethel Merman, Donna Rancourt (one son Christopher and two daughters Sharon and Diana) and Tova Traesnaes in 1973, whom he was still married to.
His friends and co-workers took to Twitter Sunday evening to express their feelings of Borgnine.
Leonard Nimoy stated, “Ernest Borgnine was helpful to me when we worked together on Wagon Train. Before Star Trek. A good man. RIP”
Mia Farrow remembered the actor with one of her favorite scenes, “May he rest in peace MT @MarthaPlimpton: Marty (1955) – Final scene: http://youtu.be/k4lpdP7uKeA Great, great performance.”