John Raitt, the ruggedly handsome musical theater leading man, launched his Broadway career in Rodgers & Hammerstein's 1945 hit "Carousel" and later costarred in "The Pajama Game" on Broadway and in the film version.
Born in Santa Ana, Raitt developed a love of singing at the YMCA camp run by his father, a founder and longtime director of the North Orange County YMCA. He attended high school in Fullerton, where, as a senior, he sang in the chorus of the musical "Desert Song." But he made his mark in high school as an athlete, not a singer.
In his later years he also became well-known as the father of Grammy-winning singer Bonnie Raitt, with whom he recorded several duets.