Charles Durning

February 28, 1923 – December 24, 2012

Charles Durning’s 50 year acting career covered all the bases. He got his start somewhat unexpectedly when – working as an usher in New York – he filled in for an incapacitated actor. Durning went on to appear in dozens of Broadway shows and eventually made his way into the film industry. In the 1970s, he appeared in classic films like The Sting, Dog Day Afternoon and The Muppet Movie. Television appearances followed as well as more movies. He notably co-starred in a couple of Coen Brothers’ movies and could be counted on to play Santa Claus whenever needed.

In all, Durning was nominated for dozens of awards throughout his career. He won a Tony, a couple of Drama Desk Awards and a Golden Globe. But, all of his acting accolades pale in comparison to his military honors. For his service in World War II, he received a Bronze Star, a Silver Star, three Purple Hearts and a trove of additional awards. He was the only member of his unit to survive the invasion at Normandy in 1944.

After a harrowing military career and an extraordinary acting career, Charles Durning died of natural causes on December 24, 2012 (the same day as fellow actor Jack Klugman) at the age of 89. He was buried with honors at Arlington.


Arlington National Cemetery – Arlington, VA

Specific Location

Section 66, Grave 127; Along MacArthur Dr. about halfway along section 66, Charles is buried in the first row from the road.


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