Nicholas Colasanto, the actor and television director who achieved his greatest success as Coach on the TV series Cheers at the end of his career, was born January 19, 1924 in Providence, Rhode Island, one of seven children. He attended Providence's Central High School but did not graduate due to World War II, as he joined the Navy.
At the age of 28, he saw Henry Fonda perform on Broadway and was infected by the acting bug.
Colasanto was primarily a dramatic actor but the producers of the TV comedy Cheers cast him as Ernie Coach Pantusso, the absent-minded and dumb but lovable bartender. The role made him famous and he earned an Emmy nomination as Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series each of the three years that he appeared on the show.
Sadly, at the height of his fame, he died from a heart ailment at his home on February 15th, 1985.
Cheers star Nick Colasanto had won many awards during his time with that hit show, which include:
1985 Nominated Emmy Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series(Cheers 1982)
1984 nominated Emmy Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy, Variety or Music Series (Cheers 1982)
1985 Won Q award Best Supporting Actor in a Quality Comedy Series (Cheers 1982)