Forrest Compton Dies Of COVID-19: ‘The Edge Of Night’, ‘Gomer Pyle’ Actor Was 94

Forrest Compton died following COVID-19 complications on April 5, Sunday. He was 94 and known for his role in one of the longest-running soap operas, ‘The Edge of Night.’

The actor’s friends confirmed the news of his death to Shelter Island Reporter. Even though he retired from acting in 2002, Forrest continues to be remembered for his role in the daytime opera as attorney Mike Karr. He aced the role for over a decade.

But, that wasn’t how it all started for him. He was born in 1925 in Reading, Pennsylvania, to a chemist who only wanted his son to have access to a good education. But the war began. Forrest served in the 103rd Infantry Division during World War II, after which he attended college where he would actively participate in school productions. Later, he enrolled at Yale School of Drama for a three-year program and during those years had become friends with Paul Newman.

Just last year, in an interview with Shelter Island Reporter, Forrest elaborated on how charming Paul was and that he was only six months older than him. “I remember Paul making salad dressing back then. Once the agents saw Paul and those blue eyes and his charm, he was on television a month later,” he added.

Forrest appeared in 42 episodes of ‘Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.’ as Lieutenant Colonel Edward Gray, and played a part in ‘Hogan’s Heroes’ as well, in which he was a German soldier.

On the personal front, Forrest met Jeanne Sementini at a party when he was all of 50 and she was 10 years younger to him. The two were married in 1975. “She was just different enough from me that it was going to be an adventure. I think she felt the same way,” he remembered.