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Harold Coleman Mitchell, Jr.

Died: November 17, 1992

Harold Coleman Mitchell, Jr., known as Chick, was tapped as a Whiffenpoof of 1966, but took off the academic year of 1965-66, then returned to Yale and graduated with the class of 1967. He was the son of Harold Coleman Mitchell, Sr., and Lorraine Lucey Mitchell, and prepared for Yale at St. John’s College, Washington, DC. He was a member of Ezra Stiles (where he was on the boxing team), Phi Gamma Delta, or Alpha as it then was, and sang with the Augmented Seven before being tapped as a Whiff. He was also a member of Skull and Bones, class of 1967.

Chick began his career at WHNC-TV in New Haven and WWOR-TV in New York, where he worked as a writer, producer and director. He also was the executive producer of NY Mets Baseball. While at WWOR Chick met and married Gloria Carbone, who says: “If there was a lively group crowded around an office, and you heard laughter, you knew Chick was in there. We dated in secret for six months before I told our colleagues that his warmth, brilliance and integrity were too good to pass up. We were married on September 29, 1973, and we held our reception at The Yale Club.”

Moving to Los Angeles in 1974, Mitchell worked as a writer for MTM Enterprises sitcoms Rhoda and The Bob Newhart Show. He also was a writer and executive producer for Columbia Pictures Television, producing Gimme a Break, Spencer, Under One Roof, Roomies, and I Married Dora He often partnered with Geoff Neigher, Y’67, on these projects.

Chick was the recipient of a Writers Guild of America Award and was nominated for a NAACP Image Award and a People’s Choice Award. Geoff also reports nominations for a Golden Globe award and the Humanitas prize.

Chick died at age forty-eight, November 17, 1992, of a sudden illness. He is survived by his wife, writer-producer Gloria Carbone Mitchell, son Rory Coleman (b. 1979, now a filmmaker) and daughter Caitlin Caroline (b. 1983, artist), a sister and a brother, Jeff Mitchell, a TV sports producer-director.

Mike Kail, Y’67 writes: “Chick was one of those people who always made others feel better. He never cared to burden someone with his problems but, rather, wanted to see how he could make your problems go away.”

He is sorely missed by family and two Yale classes. And who knows what else might have flowed from Chick’s creativity.