Lee Majors: A Retrospective on the Iconic Television Star

Lee Majors, an established American actor, was born Harvey Lee Yeary on April 23, 1939. His career in the entertainment industry spans several decades, during which he became best known for his roles in iconic …

Lee Majors
Real Name:Harvey Lee Yeary
Birthday:April 23, 1939
Net Worth:$15 million
Height:180 cm
Occupation:American Actor

Lee Majors, an established American actor, was born Harvey Lee Yeary on April 23, 1939. His career in the entertainment industry spans several decades, during which he became best known for his roles in iconic television series such as “The Big Valley,” “The Six Million Dollar Man,” and “The Fall Guy.” Majors’ portrayal of these characters left a lasting impression on audiences, helping to cement his place as a recognizable figure in American pop culture.

Starting off with minor parts in films and television, Majors’ breakout came with the role of Heath Barkley in “The Big Valley,” where he starred alongside Barbara Stanwyck. His success on the show paved the way for his most famous role as Colonel Steve Austin in “The Six Million Dollar Man,” a role that capitalized on the era’s fascination with science fiction and advanced technology. This series not only showcased Majors’ acting abilities but also embedded him into the cultural zeitgeist of the 1970s.

Throughout his career, Lee Majors has demonstrated versatility and longevity, transitioning from television to film roles and back again. His personal life, marked by several marriages and a dedication to his craft, adds depth to his celebrity persona. While he has maintained a lower profile in recent years, his legacy in the industry is unquestionable, with a body of work that continues to be celebrated by fans and peers alike.

Early Life and Education

Lee Majors’ early years were defined by personal loss and a subsequent rise through athletic prowess that shaped his educational path. His journey from a challenging childhood to his educational strides at two different universities reveals a foundation layered with resilience and dedication.

Birth and Childhood

Lee Majors was born Harvey Lee Yeary on April 23, 1939, in Wyandotte, Michigan. His entrance into the world was marred by tragedy; his father, a manual laborer, passed away in a workplace accident before his birth, and his mother died in a car accident before he reached two. Orphaned early, Majors’ formative years were spent under the care of relatives and later at a boy’s home.

College Years

Majors showed a natural talent for athletics, which garnered him a scholarship to Indiana University. There, he was active in sports, competing in track and football. However, in pursuit of more focus on his education, he transferred to Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond, Kentucky, in 1959. His years in college not only honed his academic pursuits but also prepared him for the physicality of the roles that would later define his acting career.

Acting Career

Lee Majors is an American actor whose career took off in the 1960s. His work spans across iconic television series and films, cementing his place in Hollywood as a versatile performer in both action series and westerns.

Breakout Role in ‘The Big Valley’

In 1965, Lee Majors landed the role of Heath Barkley in the television Western The Big Valley. His portrayal of the ruggedly coherent family member on the ranch won the hearts of viewers and established him as a significant presence on the small screen.

‘The Six Million Dollar Man’

Majors’ most iconic role came in the 1970s action series The Six Million Dollar Man. As Colonel Steve Austin, a former astronaut with bionic implants, he became a household name. The show ran successfully from 1973 to 1978 and spun off several movies and merchandise, underscoring Majors’ impact on pop culture.

Later Television and Film Roles

Following the success of The Six Million Dollar Man, Majors continued with a string of roles in the 1980s. He took the lead as Colt Seavers, a Hollywood stuntman and bounty hunter, in the action-packed show The Fall Guy. The series aired for five seasons from 1981 to 1986 and showcased Majors’ ability to blend charm with tough-guy bravado. His later career includes a variety of television and film roles, maintaining his relevance in the entertainment industry.

Personal Life

Lee Majors’ personal life features a history of multiple marriages and a family that includes four children. His unions and offspring have contributed notably to his off-screen identity, painting a picture of a man who has experienced an elaborate personal journey alongside his professional career.


  • Farrah Fawcett: Majors and Fawcett were a prominent Hollywood couple, though they did not have children together.
  • Karen Velez: Majors married Karen Velez, with whom he has three children.
  • Other Spouses: In total, he has been married four times, with the other spouses being Kathy Robinson, his first wife with whom he has one child, and Faith Cross, his current wife since 2002.


  • Children: From his union with Kathy Robinson, Majors has a son, Lee Majors Jr. His marriage to Karen Velez resulted in three more children, including twin sons, Dane Luke and Trey Kulley, and a daughter, Nikki Majors.
  • Extended Family: Majors’ family extends beyond his immediate offspring, encompassing his spouses and the familial ties they brought into his life.

Major Works and Contributions

Lee Majors’ career spans several decades, marked by several significant roles in television and film. He also made substantial contributions as a producer. His work in iconic roles has left a lasting impression on the entertainment industry.

Iconic Roles and Performances

  • The Six Million Dollar Man: Lee Majors became a household name as Col. Steve Austin in this classic television series. His portrayal of a former astronaut with bionic implants is considered one of his most memorable performances.
  • The Fall Guy: Aside from his role in “The Six Million Dollar Man,” Lee Majors starred as a stuntman and bounty hunter in the 1980s action-adventure television series, enhancing his popularity and showcasing his range as an actor.
  • Filmography Highlights: Throughout his career, Majors has accumulated a diverse filmography. His other notable works include “The Big Valley,” “Scrooged,” and more recently, guest appearances on various television shows demonstrating his longevity in the industry.

Producing Credits

  • Television Production: Lee Majors has leveraged his experience in front of the camera to serve as a producer. His credits include work on “The Fall Guy” where he was not only the lead actor but also had a significant role behind the scenes.

Legacy and Cultural Impact

Lee Majors’s career in the entertainment industry has left a significant mark on American television and continues to be celebrated for its impact on popular culture.

Honors and Recognition

Golden Globe Award

  • Nominated: Best TV Actor for his role in The Six Million Dollar Man (1976)

TV Guide

  • Acknowledged: Majors’s performance as a cultural touchstone of the 1970s

Influence on Popular Culture

Bionic Man

  • As the Bionic Man in The Six Million Dollar Man, Lee Majors helped to popularize the idea of cyborgs, blending human and machine in a way that captured the imagination of audiences.


  • The concept of a cyborg like Steve Austin became a formative element for science fiction storytelling, influencing the genre’s direction.

1970s Culture

  • Majors’s roles resonated with 1970s culture, reflecting an era captivated by advancements in technology and exploration of human potential.

Hollywood Stunt Man

  • With The Fall Guy, Majors honored Hollywood stunt men, shedding light on their contributions to the film and television industry.

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