Jonathan Winters, the comedic film and TV actor who was huge in the ’70s and ’80s on shows like “Mork and Mindy,” has died at age 87 .
Winters was born in Dayton, Ohio, the son of Alice Kilgore (née Rodgers), a radio personality, and Jonathan Harshman Winters II, an investment broker. He is a descendant of Valentine Winters, founder of the Winters National Bank in Dayton, Ohio (now part of JPMorgan Chase). Of English and Scots-Irish ancestry, Winters has described his father as an alcoholic who had trouble holding a job. When he was seven, his parents separated, and Winters’ mother took him to Springfield, Ohio to live with his maternal grandmother.
At age 17, Winters quit high school and joined the United States Marine Corps and served two and a half years in the Pacific Theater during World War II. Upon his return he attended Kenyon College. He later studied cartooning at Dayton Art Institute, where he met Eileen Schauder, whom he married in 1948.
Winters is a brother of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity (Lambda chapter).