Ralph Waite

Ralph Waite wanted John Walton to be a little meaner

The actor wanted Pa Walton to be more like his own dad, who could be critical. When Ralph Waite joined The Waltons to play John Walton, he did way more than just act the part. He began directing episodes in 1973, a year after the show premiered, and in total, he directed 16 episodes.

Long After ‘The Waltons,’ Ralph Waite Starred Alongside Kevin Costner in Classic 1990s Film

Ralph Waite was one of America’s favorite fathers when he portrayed John Walton Sr. on The Waltons. The role was Waite’s first big TV break. On the beloved show, Waite and Olivia (Michael Learned) raised seven kids through the Great Depression and into World War II. Waite took a winding route to acting, coming to his chosen profession when he was approaching middle age. He first served in the Marines, then he was a social worker who also became an ordained minister.

Whatever Happened To Ralph Waite, John Walton Sr. On ‘The Waltons?’

Families come in many forms. At the heart of each, members generally want to share love, respect, and support between one another. Good humor uplifts spirits during trying times, and a cool head keeps perspective when things go awry. Maybe that’s why former President George H. W. Bush once said, “We are going to keep on trying to strengthen the American family, to make American families a lot more like the Waltons and a lot less like the Simpsons.” Representing this iconic family was a powerful cast that included names worth keeping track of. Here, the spotlight focuses on Ralph Waite, known as John Walton Sr.

Happy Birthday Ralph Waite: Remembering the Star of ‘The Waltons’ Born Today in 1928

Wishing the late actor a “Happy Birthday” today, Ralph Waite was born this day in 1928. Originally from White Plains, New York, he eventually discovered his life’s purpose as an actor in his 30s. “The Waltons” star gained most of his notoriety on the classic CBS drama series. Earning him an Emmy nomination, he’s recognized for the role of John Walton Sr.