- The eldest of five children.
- Joined the Marines in 1946.
- Following graduation from Yale Divinity School, became an ordained Presbyterian minister, but left after his eldest daughter died.
- Worked as a religious book editor at Harper & Row.
- Made his Broadway debut in the play Marathon '33 in 1963.
- Unsuccessfully ran for Congress twice, in 1990 and 1998.
- Founded an experimental theater company, the Los Angeles Actors Theater, in 1975.
- Played the father of two leading men on two long-running series at the same time – Gibbs on NCIS and Booth on Bones.
- 1977, Emmy — Outstanding Single Performance by a Supporting Actor in a Comedy or Drama Series: Nominee
- 1978, Emmy — Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series: Nominee
- Linda East — Wife
- Beverly Hall — Ex-wife
- Kerry Shear Waite — Ex-wife
- Kathleen — Daughter
- Donald Waite — Brother
- Suzanne — Daughter
- Liam Waite — Stepson
- Bucknell University, Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, United States (BA, 1952); Yale University, Yale Divinity School, New Haven, Connecticut, United States (1956)
- Birth Name: Ralph Harold Waite
- Birth Place: White Plains, New York, United States
- Died: February 13, 2014
- Profession: Actor
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