Real Marlboro Man Gone to the Big Ranch in the Sky

Cigarette advertisement icon Darrell Winfield dies at 85

One of the original Marlboro Men died Monday at his Wyoming home.

Darrell Winfield passed away at the age of 85. His cause of death has not been released.

Winfield appeared in the early Marlboro Men cigarette ads, regarded as one of the most successful tobacco advertising campaigns ever. While many of the Marlboro Men were actors, Winfield was the real deal.

Leo Burnett/Philip Morris Advertising discovered Winfield in 1968 while he was working on the Quarter Circle 5 Ranch in Pinedale, WY. According to his obituary, Winfield followed American Indian Spirituality, was given the Native American name of “Strong Mountain” and attended sweats at several lodges.

“His family said he loved horses, rodeo, especially team roping, ranching, and the cowboy way of life,” his obituary reads. “He like to tease, was quite a character, and never met a stranger. He collected bits and spurs, loved to read western non-fiction, history, and stories of the Native Americans.”

According to the Los Angeles Times, at least four Marlboro Men have died of smoking-related diseases. dailyRx News has yet to confirm Winfield’s cause of death.

Smoking has been tied to lung cancer, heart disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, among other health problems.