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Guy Williams was born of Sicilian parentage on January 14, 1924, as Armando Joseph Catalano in the Washington Heights area of New York City. His parents, insurance broker Attilio and Clare Catalano, were from the island of Sicily, and were by then living in poverty. Attilio was the son of a wealthy timber grower in Messina, who purchased land in New Jersey. Williams grew up in Brooklyn's Little Italy neighborhood.
In NYC's Public School 189, Williams stood out in mathematics. Later, he attended George Washington High School, where he occasionally worked in its soda fountain. He then left to attend the Peekskill Military Academy, where he was an enthusiastic student. His interests included football and chess.
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