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Ernest Borgnine Dies at 95
One of the most beloved actors of all-time, Ernest Borgnine, passed away at the age of 95 over the weekend. Borgnine was the captain of a PT boat in the sitcom ‘McHale’s Navy.’ Harry Flynn, a spokesman for Borgnine, said that the actor passed away on Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Flynn told the media that the cause of death was kidney failure.
Borgnine appeared in over 110 films during the five decades he was active. Some of those movies include ‘The Dirty Dozen,’ ‘The Poseidon Adventure,’ ‘From Here to Eternity’ and ‘Marty.’ Borgnine also said that he died at least 30 times onscreen.
“I’ve been shot, stabbed, kicked, punched through barroom doors by Spencer Tracy and Gary Cooper, pushed in front of moving subway trains, devoured by rats and a giant mutated fish, blown up in spaceships, melted down into a Technicolor puddle, jumped into a snake pit, and I perished from thirst in the Sahara Desert,” he wrote in his memoir from 2008.
Borgnine won the Academy Award for best actor for the role he played in ‘Marty’ in 1955. In the movie, Borgnine played a New York City butcher who was very inept and courted a schoolteacher. Borgnine became a household name across the country when he starred in ‘McHale’s Navy.’ His character was Lieutenant Commander Quinton McHale, who was the skipper of a PT boat with a fun crew during World War II.
“It’s much better to be a character actor and be working forever than it is to be a lead man and say, ‘My, the girls all love me,’” Borgnine said back in 2006.
Borgnine was born on January 24, 1917 as Ermes Effron Borgnino in Hamden, Connecticut. His parents came to the United States from Italy. Borgnine spent a couple of years living in Italy with his mother after his parents divorced when he was two. Borgnine served for six years in the Navy before attaining the rank of chief petty officer while serving in World War II. Borgnine began acting after his mother gave him the idea to do so. He attended a drama school in Connecticut to get his career started.
“A fine-looking guy can be a louse, and a hard-looking man can be a real person,” Borgnine said to the Times in 1955. “Anybody can play a rowdy role, but it takes something on the ball to play a good guy.”
Borgnine was married five times, once to Ethel Merman for 32 days. Borgnine had three children from his various marriages.Ernest Borgnine Dies at 95 by Jim Vassallo