Renaldo told some interviewers that he actually did not know where he was born Various sources claim that he was born in Oancea, Galaţi County, Romania as Vasile Dumitru V. Couyanos or Basil Couyanos. Renaldo apparently never knew his biological parents and was raised in several European countries. His birthplace has been generally stated as Romania and he said his first childhood memories were in Romania.
He emigrated to America in the 1920s.
Renaldo died of lung cancer in 1980, aged 76, in Goleta, California. His interment took place in Calvary Cemetery in Santa Barbara, California.