Eric Dane

by Lil Vacha on August 1, 2011

Birth Name: Eric T. Melvin

Place of Birth: San Francisco, California, United States

Date of Birth: November 9, 1972

Ethnicity: English, German, Scottish, Russian Jewish, Austrian Jewish, Finnish

Eric Dane is an American actor.

Eric is the son of Leah (Cohn) and William Melvin. He has English, German, Scottish, Russian Jewish, Austrian Jewish, and Finnish ancestry. Eric was raised in the Jewish faith of his mother and step-father (he was Bar Mitzvah).

Eric is married to actress Rebecca Gayheart, with whom he has two children.

Eric’s paternal grandfather was George Francis Melvin (the son of David Holmes Melvin and Laura Mack Johnson). George was born in Florida. David was the son of Joseph Melvin and MaryAnn Elizabeth Holmes. Laura was the daughter of Washington Perry Johnson and Sarah Frances Hill. Joseph Melvin’s great-grandfather, Daniel Melvin, was Scottish.

Eric’s paternal grandmother was Lonnie Mae Matthews (the daughter of John Wesley Matthews and Eva Elizabeth Ward). Lonnie was born in Florida. John was the son of Isom Burell Matthews and Elon Morriel. Eva was the daughter of Henry Hubard Ward and Sharlotte Elizabeth Roberts. Eva’s father was born in Germany. Eric’s father also had English ancestry.

Eric’s maternal grandfather was Maurice Dave Cohn (the son of Henry Cohn and Frances Zimet). Maurice was born in California. Henry was a Russian Jewish immigrant, the son of Isador Aaron Cohn and Ethel. Frances was born in New York, to Austrian Jewish parents.

Eric’s maternal grandmother was Rachel Helen “Rae” Wirtanen (the daughter of John R. Wirtanen and Tyyne Sillanpaa or Bak). Rachel was born in California, to Finnish parents.

Sources: Eric talks about his Jewish religion –

Genealogy of Eric’s paternal grandfather, George Francis Melvin (focusing on his own mother’s side) –

Eric’s paternal grandfather, George Francis Melvin, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Eric’s paternal grandmother, Lonnie Mae Matthews, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Eric’s maternal grandfather, Maurice Dave Cohn, on the 1910 U.S. Census –

Eric’s maternal grandmother, Rachel Helen “Rae” Wirtanen, on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Article about Eric’s wife, Rebecca Gayheart (mentions Eric’s Jewish faith) –

Allen Berezovsky /

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

madman June 15, 2016 at 3:25 am

*English, some German, distant Scottish (father)
*Ashkenazi Jewish, Finnish (mother)

Joseph Melvin’s great-grandfather, Daniel Melvin, was Scottish.

neiltennant November 10, 2017 at 1:29 pm

he looks like LEO DI CAPRIO and on some pics like SEAN PENN

Susi November 4, 2015 at 12:51 pm

Correction. There’s no such name as Fyyne, it’s Tyyne.

Liljaoch November 1, 2013 at 1:20 am

He looks so fucking finnish. It can be seen he is finnish

levangelista36 August 16, 2012 at 8:29 pm

He’s a practicing Jew.

christianz June 15, 2012 at 6:19 am

wonderful eyes

he looks like sean pean 10+ years ago

nnnnn November 20, 2012 at 12:31 am

Sean Penn was never handsom, and he has a very negative charisma.
Dane looks like Di Caprio. Interesting, how people of
different heritages look each other

neiltennant November 10, 2017 at 1:32 pm


but please mind that LEO DI CAPRIO is not just Italian American

Italian Americans are those people who are proud of their heritage and traditions

Travolta Di Caprio Madonna and De Niro are pale and blue eyed and they claimed to be just Italian
and mind that MADONNA wore ITALIANS DO IT BETTER shirt although all of them have Anglo and other heritages

DI CAPRIO has very Russian eyes i said years ago before WIKIPEDIA and i was right he is half Russian

and Dane is also half Jewish (from Eastern Europe)

andrew November 10, 2017 at 6:23 pm

Actually De Niro has not blue eyes. Eye colour is not the parameter to guess a nationality. The light eyes average in Italy is around 25-30%, so you get a lot of Italians with light eyes, being of the most populous European countries.

I love you, Roger Scientist March 21, 2012 at 1:51 am

Oh. You already have him and his wife. I should have known. How could you not have the actors from Grey’s Anatomy?

Anyway, I think he’s hot. Rebecca is lucky.

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