Celebrities

Actor Jonathan Winters Dead at 87

Seen as inspirational to many improv comics

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Comedian Jonathan Winters, whose breakneck improvisations inspired Robin Williams, Jim Carrey and many others, has died at age 87.

Longtime family friend Joe Petro III says the Ohio native died Thursday evening at his Montecito, Calif., home of natural causes.

Winters was a master of improvisational comedy, with a grab bag of eccentric personalities and facial expressions. Characters such as the dirty old lady Maude Frickert were based on people Winters knew growing up in Ohio.