Marlboro Man Darrell Hugh Winfield Dies at 85


Darrell Hugh Winfield, who is famous for being one of the most recognizable men that appeared for advertisements of Marlboro, has passed away at 85 years old.

The rugged good looks, reddish mustache and flinty blue eyes of Winfield lent success to his stint as one of the Marlboro Men, as they were called, who roamed across the western regions of the United States.

With the Marlboro Men headlining their advertisements, the cigarette brand enjoyed one of the most successful campaigns in the 20th century.

Winfield passed away in his Riverton, Wyoming home, according to the Davis Funeral Home. The cause of death was not stated.

The Marlboro Men wore Stetsons and spurs and built up the macho image for the Marlboro brand of cigarettes. Winfield was one of the more popular ones, among the Marlboro Men, at some point appearing in more than 8 out of every 10 advertisements for Marlboro.

Some of the Marlboro Men includes a firefighter from California, a former professional football player and man from Mississippi that was the owner of a fence company. Winfield was different because he really was a cowboy throughout his life.

One of Winfield's friends described him as a "man's man" in an interview with the Los Angeles Times back in 1975, as Winfield worked on his ranch daily.

Part of the success of the Marlboro Men was due to the mystique surrounding each one of them, as little about their personal lives were made public, including their marital status, their residence, and even their names.

Darrell Hugh Winfield, born on July 30, 1929 in Little Kansas, Oklahoma, was the eldest of the six children of Marion and Dapalean Winfield. The Winfields moved from Oklahoma to California when Darrell was six years old, and he grew up in a small town named Hanford in the Central Valley.

In 1948, Winfield got married to Lennie Spring, and their marriage led to six children.

Winfield moved their family to Pinedale, Wyoming in 1968, where he worked as a ranch hand. There, Winfield was discovered by photographers working for Leo Burnett, the advertising agency of Marlboro's parent brand, Philip Morris.

Leo Burnett ran the Marlboro Man advertisements for over two decades, mostly based on Winfield, until 1998. In this year, a settlement between state governments and tobacco companies banned the usage of cartoons or humans in advertisements for tobacco in the United States.

For the advertisements, Winfield never wore any makeup, except to be able to cover scratches on his face.

When he was asked how life may have turned out for him if he was not chosen to become a Marlboro Man, Winfield answered, "Life would have basically been the same."

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