Richard X. Slattery

Richard X. Slattery
Actor Richard Slattery aboard USS Peleliu (LHA-5) in 1981.jpeg
Richard Xavier Slattery

(1925-06-26)June 26, 1925
The Bronx, New York, U.S.
Died January 27, 1997(1997-01-27) (aged 71)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Occupation Actor
Years active 1960–1990

Richard Xavier Slattery (June 26, 1925 – January 27, 1997) was an American character actor in film, theater and television.[1] Slattery appeared in such films as A Distant Trumpet, The Boston Strangler, Walking Tall, The No Mercy Man and Herbie Rides Again.

Early years

Born in New York, Slattery was a graduate of All Hallows High School who briefly studied at Fordham University, where he had scholarships in track and football. He left Fordham and enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, where he served as a lieutenant in the Pacific for two and a half years.[2]


Slattery was distinguished by a square-jawed look and a rough, gravelly voice that made him ideal as a "tough guy" character, usually as a cowboy or a cop or a drill sergeant type. He had been an NYPD police officer for 12 years (1948–1960) and started his acting career in police academy training films, and in community theater in the Bronx.

Slattery appeared in the first season of The Odd Couple, episode #2 "The Fight of the Felix". After Oscar gets into a fight with a hockey player played by Slattery, Felix tries to stand up for his roommate, but ends up in the boxing ring instead (original air date: October 8, 1970).

He also has had numerous guest appearance roles in television, including Route 66, The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, 77 Sunset Strip, Gunsmoke, Rawhide, The Andy Griffith Show, Bewitched, The Invaders, F Troop, The Green Hornet, The Virginian, Bonanza, The Partridge Family, The Mod Squad, Owen Marshall: Counselor at Law, Emergency!, Run, Joe, Run, The Waltons, Ironside, Kojak, The San Pedro Beach Bums, and Knight Rider

Slattery starred in a revival of the play The Time of Your Life, starting March 17, 1972, at the Huntington Hartford Theater in Los Angeles.[3][4]

For 14 years, Slattery was featured in many TV commercials for Unocal 76 gasoline, playing a grandfatherly service station owner named Murph[5] (filmed at the 76 station adjacent to Dodger Stadium). He played Lieutenant Modeen in Switch[6]:1046 and had featured roles in three series: The Gallant Men (as 1st Sgt. John McKenna),[6]:376 Mister Roberts (as Captain John Morton),[6]:703 and C.P.O. Sharkey (as Captain "Buck" Buckner).[6] He appeared on the Cannon episode, "The Cure That Kills," as a carnival owner, an episode which aired as a rerun on MeTV on February 2, 2014.

Personal life

Slattery was married to Pegeen Rose, an actress. They had five children.[7] His son, Kevin, is a television producer (Just Shoot Me).[8]


Slattery died on January 27, 1997.[5]


Year Title Role Notes
1946 Till the End of Time Captain Uncredited
1960 BUtterfield 8 State Trooper Uncredited
1961 The Last Time I Saw Archie Sergeant in Mess Hall Uncredited
1964 A Distant Trumpet Sgt. Fry
1967 A Time for Killing Cpl. Paddy Darling
1968 The Secret War of Harry Frigg MP Sergeant
1968 The Boston Strangler Det. Capt. Ed Willis
1973 The No Mercy Man Mark Hand
1973 Walking Tall Arno Purdy
1974 Herbie Rides Again Traffic Commissioner
1974 Busting Desk Sergeant
1974 Black Eye Lt. Bill Bowen
1976 Zebra Force
1979 The Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again Sgt. Slaughter - Head Soldier


  1. ^ "The New York Times". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-01-15.
  2. ^ Misurell, Ed (October 14, 1965). "They Won't Let Him Out of Uniform". The Tipton Daily Tribune. Indiana, Tipton. p. 7. Retrieved September 20, 2018 – via open access
  3. ^ "WorldCat". Retrieved 2012-01-22.
  4. ^ "Hollywood Beat". The Afro American. 1972-04-08. Retrieved 2012-01-22.
  5. ^ a b "Richard X. Slattery, character actor on TV". Arizona Republic. Arizona, Phoenix. February 2, 1997. p. 44. Retrieved September 20, 2018 – via open access
  6. ^ a b c d Terrace, Vincent (2011). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2010 (2nd ed.). Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. p. 216. ISBN 978-0-7864-6477-7.
  7. ^ "Richard X. Slattery Changes Uniforms". Biddeford-Saco Journal. Maine, Biddeford. November 20, 1965. p. 10. Retrieved September 21, 2018 – via open access
  8. ^ "The New York Times". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-01-15.

External links