Martin Milner Biography

Martin Milner was an American film, stage, radio, and TV actor. Check out this biography to know about his childhood, family, personal life, career, and achievements.

Quick Facts

Birthday: December 28, 1931

Nationality: American

Famous: Actors T V & Movie Producers

Died At Age: 83

Sun Sign: Capricorn

Also Known As: Martin Sam Milner

Born in: Detroit, Michigan

Famous as: Actor

Height: 6'0" (183 cm), 6'0" Males


Spouse/Ex-: Judith Bess Jones

father: Sam Gordon Milner

mother: Mildred (née Martin

children: Amy Milner, Andrew Milner, Molly Milner, Stuart Milner

Died on: September 6, 2015

City: Detroit, Michigan

U.S. State: Michigan

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Martin Milner was an American film, stage, radio, and TV actor. Having appeared in numerous roles in a number of films and TV shows, the veteran actor is still remembered for his performances as ‘Tod Stiles’ in 'Route 66' and ‘Officer Pete Malloy’ in 'Adam-12.' Interestingly, Martin has portrayed ‘Officer Pete Malloy’ in three more series: 'Dragnet' (1967), 'The D.A.' (1971), and 'Emergency!' (1972). 'Dragnet' is one of his notable projects, as he transitioned from being a radio actor to a TV actor in the series. Martin had also appeared in a significant number of war movies in his career and has also served in the ‘US Army.’

Childhood & Early Years
  • Martin made his first TV appearance with the 'ABC' drama 'The Lone Ranger’ in 1950. He was then seen in his first significant TV role, as 'Drexel Potter,' in the 'ABC' sitcom 'The Stu Erwin Show.'
  • After appearing in a number of war films during the 1950s, he met and befriended legendary actor Jack Webb while filming the 1951 war film 'Halls of Montezuma.' The friendship earned him a recurring role in the radio–TV motion-picture series 'Dragnet.' Martin took a break from acting in 1952 to join the ‘US Army.’
  • For 2 years, Martin served in the US military's entertainment department at Fort Ord and was stationed in California’s Monterey Bay Peninsula. He majorly worked as a director of training films during his stint in the army. After completing his military services, Martin was heard in the radio sitcom 'The Life of Riley.'
  • Martin again collaborated with Jack in the 1955 musical crime film ‘Pete Kelly’s Blues.’ Under his contract with the production house 'Hecht-Lancaster,' Martin appeared in the notable role of a young jazz guitarist named ‘Steve Dallas’ in the 1957 film noir ‘Sweet Smell of Success.’ The character required him to play the instrument numerous times on screen. Since Martin was not skilled in playing the guitar, the makers had to resort to trick shots. This film credited Martin as “Marty,” a name that was mostly used by his near and dear ones.
  • During this phase, Martin flourished in his film career. However, on TV, he mostly made guest and brief appearances. However, Martin’s TV career took an enormous leap when he was cast as ‘Tod Stiles’ in the 'CBS' TV series 'Route 66.'
  • In 1960, Martin began his journey in the one-of-a-kind show 'Route 66.' This was a different experience for Martin as an actor, because the plotline of the series was based on journeys all over the US. Martin’s character, ‘Tod,’ was on a continuous road trip with his friend, ‘Buz Murdock.’ As a result, Martin had to travel a lot while filming and was often joined by his wife and children on the sets. In his 4-year stint with the series, Martin appeared in 116 of its episodes.
  • Martin’s first project as an associate producer was the 1960 comedy 'Sex Kittens Go to College.' He also essayed the role of ‘George Barton’ in the film. In 1967, Martin appeared as ‘Mel Anderson’ in the drama film 'Valley of the Dolls.'
  • Martin also had an association with theater, and in 1967, he appeared in the ‘Broadway’ comedy 'The Ninety Day Mistress.' He was also part of the 1974 ‘Kenley Players’ production titled 'The Tunnel of Love.'
  • In 1968, Martin had his second recurring role, in the ‘NBC’ police-procedural drama 'Adam-12.' This was his one of his most significant collaborations with his long-time friend Jack Webb, who had co-created the show. From 1968 to 1975, Martin portrayed the role of ‘LAPD’ veteran patrol officer ‘Peter Joseph "Pete" Malloy,’ one of his most memorable characters. Martin had once revealed that he had initially declined the offer to star in 'Adam-12,’ as he was then already working in a play. He had thought that the play would be more beneficial for his career, but to his disappointment, the play flopped.
  • After 'Adam-12,' Martin was seen in numerous guest appearances, in shows such as the action-adventure series 'MacGyver,' 'Airwolf,' 'Murder, She Wrote,' and 'RoboCop: The Series.' In 1983, he hosted one of San Diego’s most popular morning radio wake-up shows, on ‘AM 600 KOGO.’
  • With several TV movies and a few brief recurring roles to his credit, Martin made his final TV appearance in the 'CBS' action comedy-mystery-medical crime drama 'Diagnosis: Murder' in 1997. In 1998, he appeared in the documentary film 'Route 66:
  • Return to the Road With,' to pay tribute to this marvelous series, which is regarded as a milestone in Martin’s career.
Family & Personal Life
  • Martin met singer and actor Judith Bess Jones at a Hollywood dinner party in May 1956, and they got married on February 23 the following year. They had four children. Martin’s eldest daughter, Amy, died of acute myeloid leukemia in December 2004. His other surviving children are his daughter, Molly, and his two sons, Stuart and Andrew.
  • Martin died of heart failure on September 6, 2015, at his home in Carlsbad, California. He was cremated at the 'Eternal Hills Memorial Park' mortuary in Oceanside, California.
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