Born in Portland, Oregon, Wintermute attended high school in Longview, Washington. A mobile Script error: No such module "convert". center, Wintermute was a key member of the 1938–39 Oregon Ducks men's basketball team, winners of the first NCAA Tournament championship. Wintermute was voted first-team All-Pacific Coast Conference and named an All-American in 1939. He was elected to the University of Oregon Athletic Hall of Fame in 1994 and is one of six Ducks whose numbers have been retired.
Wintermute played professionally for the Detroit Eagles of the National Basketball League. He also served as player/coach for the Portland Indians of the Pacific Coast Professional Basketball League.
Following his basketball career, Wintermute worked for Boeing. He was elected to the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame in 1980. On October 21, 1977, Wintermute set out in his yacht from Portage Bay in Seattle's Lake Union and did not return. His boat was found a few days later, with one of Wintermute's friends asleep on the boat. Wintermute was never found.
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- Anderson, Lenny (1989-03-28). "The Tallest Fir, Big 'Slim" Stood Out 50 Years Ago". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved 2009-07-27.