Nicholas Colasanto

Birth Name:
Nicholas Colasanto
Birth Date:
January 19, 1924
Birth Place:
Providence, Rhode Island
Death Date:
February 12, 1985
Place of Death:
12354 Sarah Street, Studio City, California
Cause of Death:
Heart attack
Cemetery Name:
St Ann Cemetery
Claim to Fame:
Show Business
Nicholas Colasanto was a well-loved actor and television director who achieved his greatest success as "Coach" on the TV series Cheers (1982). After serving his country during World War II, at the age of 28, he saw Henry Fonda perform on Broadway and was infected by the acting bug. He joined a theater company in Phoenix, Arizona before moving back to New York, where he performed in off-Broadway productions and appeared in TV commercials. He relocated to Hollywood in 1965 and began to appear on TV, were he also made his mark as a TV director. Eventually, he directed over 100 episodes of series TV in the 1960s and 70s, including episodes of Bonanza (1959), Columbo (1971), S.W.A.T. (1975) and Starsky and Hutch (1975). His two most memorable film roles were the the boxing manager in John Huston's Fat City (1972) and the mob boss in Martin Scorsese's Raging Bull (1980). Colasanto was primarily a dramatic actor but the producers of the TV comedy Cheers (1982) 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 in Studio City, California on February 12th, 1985.

Fun Facts

Much beloved by the cast of Cheers, the picture of the Apache warrior Geronimo that Colasanto had kept in his dressing room as a good luck charm was hung on the wall of the primary set of Cheers (1982). The picture of was not only a tribute to “Nicky”, as he was known to his friends and co-workers, but was a reminder that “Coach” was still around. On the final episode of Cheers (1982), eight years after his death, Nicky Colasanto was acknowledged when series star Ted Danson, in the final scene, straightens the Geronimo picture before walking off stage for the last time.

He shares the grave with his older brother, Joseph.

Cemetery Information:

Final Resting Place:

St Ann Cemetery

73 Church Street

Cranston, Rhode Island, 02920


North America


Map of St. Ann Cemetery in Cranston, Rhode Island
Map of St. Ann Cemetery in Cranston, Rhode Island

Grave Location:

Section 31, Plot 211

Grave Location Description

As you enter the main cemetery gates, go up two sections and turn right. Go two more sections and turn left and drive to the roundabout. Turn right and go straight ahead (jogging slightly to the left). Drive to the end of the road and turn left, parking at the intersection of sections 25, 26 31 and 32. Walk up 6 rows along the road with Section 31 on your right. Walk down the row with the “Trippoli” monument 6 spaces for the final resting place of talented actor Nicholas Colasanto.

Grave Location GPS

41.798039943541916, -71.4632921018195

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