Pat Hingle (real name: Martin Patterson Hingle) was born in Miami, Florida, the son of a building contractor. His parents divorced when Hingle was still in his infancy (he never knew his father) and his mother supported the family by teaching school in Denver. She then began to travel (with her son in tow) in search of more lucrative work; by age 13 Hingle had lived in a dozen cities. The future Tony Award nominee made his "acting debut" in the third grade, playing a carrot in a school play ("At that time it didn't seem like much of a way to make a living!", he recalled). Hingle attended high school in Texas and in 1941 entered the University of Texas, majoring in advertising. After serving in the Navy during WW II, he went back to the university and got involved with the drama department as a way to meet girls. With his wife Alyce (whom he first met at the university), Hingle moved to New York and began to get jobs on the stage and on TV. The apex of his stage career was "J.B." by poet Archibald Macleish, with Hingle in the title role as a 20th-century Job. It was during the run of "J.B." that Hingle took an accidental plunge down the elevator shaft of his New York apartment building, sustaining near-fatal injuries in the 54-foot fall. He was near death for two weeks (and lost the little finger of his left hand); his recovery took more than a year. In more recent years, Hingle has played Commissioner Gordon in the "Batman" movies. Just prior to his death, he resided in Carolina Beach, North Carolina, with his wife, Julia.