Gerald S. O'Loughlin

Gerald S. O'Loughlin

O'Loughlin as Eddie Ryker in The Rookies.
Born Gerald Stuart O'Loughlin, Jr.
(1921-12-23)December 23, 1921
New York City, New York, U.S.
Died July 31, 2015(2015-07-31) (aged 93)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Occupation Actor, director
Years active 1952-2008
Spouse(s) Meryl Abeles O'Loughlin
(1966–1976) (divorced)
2 children
Children Chris O'Loughlin
Laura O'Loughlin

Gerald Stuart O'Loughlin, Jr. (December 23, 1921 – July 31, 2015), was an American television, stage, and film actor and director who was primarily known for playing tough-talking and rough-looking characters


After a stint with the United States Marine Corps, O'Loughlin used his GI Bill of Rights benefits to train at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York City. Continuing to hone his skills at the Actors Studio,[1] he would land a handful of TV and/or film roles throughout the 1950s.

Early years

O'Loughlin was a native of New York City. Before becoming an actor, he earned a college degree in mechanical engineering.[2]

Military service

O'Laughlin served two tours of duty in the Marines. "He enlisted during World War II and was recalled to active duty during the Korean conflict."[2]


It was during the '60s and 70s, however, that O'Loughlin would become virtually ubiquitous on TV, his workload decreasing only slightly during the century's final two decades.[3] One of his early guest-starring role was on ABC's Going My Way, based on a 1944 film.

O'Loughlin appeared in an episode of the 1961 television series The Asphalt Jungle. He appeared in three episodes of Hawaii Five-0. The first was aired January 29, 1969 in the episode "The Box". The second was called "Six Kilos" on March 12, 1969 (playing the same character as in "The Box"), and the third was called "A Time to Die" on September 16, 1970. He also appeared on Cannon on February 22, 1972, in the episode "Flight of the Hawks". he also appeared on episode 16 of the TV show [4] The Green Hornet. In Season 2 Episode 22 of Mission:Impossible, he played a killer for hire.

In 1970-1971, O'Loughlin portrayed Devin McNeil in the CBS crime drama Storefront Lawyers (which was revised and became Men at Law).[5]

From 1972 to 1976 O'Loughlin appeared as Lt. Ed Ryker on The Rookies. He has also appeared in semi-regular roles on the series Our House and Automan. In 1978, he appeared in the pilot episode of The Eddie Capra Mysteries, and had roles in TV miniseries such as Wheels (1978), Women in White (1979), Roots: The Next Generations (1979) and Blind Ambition (1979). He also appeared as Sgt. O'Toole in the 1983 made-for-TV miniseries The Blue and the Gray. In 1986, O'Loughlin played the part of Mr. Parks in a first season episode of Highway to Heaven entitled "The Brightest Star".

In 1988, he played Tom Callahan in Dirty Dancing.[5]:264


O'Loughlin's professional acting career began in repertory work at Crystal Lake Theatre in upstate New York.[2] The highlight of O'Laughlin's stage career was a national tour of A Streetcar Named Desire as Stanley Kowalski, opposite Tallulah Bankhead as Blanche DuBois.


His movie credits include Ensign Pulver, In Cold Blood, Ice Station Zebra, The Valachi Papers and Twilight's Last Gleaming.

Personal life

O'Loughlin and his wife Meryl Abeles O'Loughlin (1933–2007), had two children: Chris O'Loughlin (b. 1967), a member of the 1992 United States Olympic épée fencing team, and Laura O'Loughlin. O'Loughlin died of natural causes in Los Angeles on July 31, 2015.[6]



  1. Gerald O'Loughlin at the University of Wisconsin's Actors Studio audio collection
  2. 1 2 3 "He Doesn't Talk Like a Rookie". California, San Bernardino. The San Bernardino County Sun. October 15, 1972. p. 42. Retrieved January 23, 2016 via
  3. Gerald O'Loughlin filmography at IMDb
  4. the green hornet
  5. 1 2 Terrace, Vincent (2011). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2010. McFarland & Company, Inc. ISBN 978-0-7864-6477-7. Pp. 680-681, 1023
  6. "Gerald S. O'Loughlin, Star of 1970s ABC Cop Series 'The Rookies,' Dies at 93". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 10 August 2015.
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