Date of Birth
10 October 1927, Ferndale, Michigan, USA
Date of Death
6 June 2005, Ventura, California, USA (complications from pneumonia)
Ibson Dana Elcar
Marianne Torrance (1 July 1978 - ?) (divorced) 2 children
Peggy Romano (1954 - 1970) (divorced) 4 children
Katherine Frances Mead (1948 - 1950) (divorced)
Went blind due to Glaucoma c. 1991 and required special computer equipment to read printed text for the rest of his life.
When he started going blind, his character Peter Thornton on "MacGyver" (1985) was also written with the same affliction. His blindness was also written into his guest appearance on "Law & Order" (1990), resulting from Diabetic Retinopathy.
Most recently played a blind character in a guest spot on "ER" (1994).
Did not appear in either of the two "MacGyver" (1985) TV-movies: MacGyver: Lost Treasure of Atlantis (1994) (TV) and MacGyver: Trail to Doomsday (1994) (TV)
Bald and beefy American character actor from the off-Broadway stage, a noticeably gruff presence in scores of 1970s TV crime shows and action adventure.
At the time of his death in 2005, he was survived by his companion, Thelma M. Garcia, one son, Dane, and three daughters, Nora, Chandra and Marin.
Married and divorced three times. Was long-time companion of Thelma M. Garcia, at the time of his death.
Father of son, Dane Elcar, daughters, Nora Elcar Verdon, Chandra Elcar, and Marin Elcar, and stepdaughter, Emily Prager. Brother of Marie E. Hewitt and half-sister Janet K. Melville.
Parents were Danish immigrants. Father was a butcher; mother was a nanny.
Attended University of Michigan. Founded Ann Arbor Theater, while in college. Joined the U.S. Navy in 1948: Was stationed in Newfoundland, Canada.
Founded L.A. Actors' Theater in mid-1970s. Founded Santa Paula Theater Center in 1987.
Died the same day as Anne Bancroft.
His body double on "MacGyver" (1985) was Don S. Davis who would later star on "Stargate SG-1" (1997) with Elcar's co-star Richard Dean Anderson.
The second season of "MacGyver" (1985), on which he played the role of Peter Thornton, was released on DVD in the United States on June 7, 2005, only one day after his death.
While Elcar's death was directly caused by pneumonia, the pneumonia was a complication of diabetes. His glaucoma was also a complication of the same disease.
Dana drove taxicab in New York City in the early 1960s prior to making the move to Los Angeles and Hollywood.
Good friend of James Garner.
Befriended Richard Dean Anderson on the set of "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" in 1982. Anderson remembered Elcar when production on "MacGyver" started, and recommended Elcar for the part of Pete Thornton, MacGyver's friend and director of operations at The Phoenix Foundation. Elcar appeared in almost every episode of the show, only backing out when becoming ill in his later years.
Served in the 24th Infantry Division in the Korean War.