Marlboro Man Dies at 85

Darrell Hugh Winfield portrayed ad character for years
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 15, 2015 11:28 AM CST
In this Feb. 7, 2011, file photo, a man smokes a Marlboro cigarette in Hialeah, Fla.   (AP Photo/Alan Diaz, File)
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(Newser) – Darrell Hugh Winfield, one of the last Marlboro Men, died Monday at his home in Wyoming at age 85, the AP reports. The macho Marlboro Man was introduced to advertise the cigarette brand in the 1950s, in an attempt to make filtered cigarettes—which had traditionally been marketed to women—attractive to men. Winfield portrayed the iconic cowboy in TV and magazine ads from the late 1960s to the late 1980s. A County 10 obituary says that "at one time, his face was known as the most photographed around the world." The Marlboro Man character continued to be used in ads until the late 1990s.

Winfield really was a cowboy, working with horses and belonging to the Rodeo Cowboy Association; in fact, he was working on a ranch when Leo Burnett/Philip Morris Advertising discovered him. He and his wife of 66 years had six children and numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren. There's no word on how Winfield died; a few other Marlboro pitchmen have died of smoking-related illnesses.

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