Rory Calhoun was born Francis Timothy McCown on August 8, 1922 in Los Angeles and raised in Santa Cruz, California. As a teenager, he dropped out of high school and briefly fell into a life of crime. He served three years in prison for car theft.
Following his release, Calhoun took on a variety of jobs, becoming a boxer, a lumberjack, a mechanic, a truck driver, and a cowpuncher. In 1942, Alan Ladd told him that he would benefit from a screen test with 20th Century Fox. Calhoun obliged, and was subsequently granted a part in the 1944 film "Something for the Boys."
This launched his long and distinguished acting career, during which he starred in such pictures as The Great John L (1945), The Red House (1947), Sand (1949), A Ticket to Tomahawk (1950), I'd Climb the Highest Mountain (1951), With a Song in My Heart (1952), How to Marry a Millionaire (1953), River of No Return (1954), The Spoilers (1956), The Hired Gun (1957), The Colossus of Rhodes(1961), Marco Polo (1962), Requiem for a Heavyweight (1962), Black Spurs (1965), Dayton's Devils (1968), Night of the Lepus (1972), Love and the Midnight Auto Supply (1977), and his final appearance, Pure Country (1992).
Rory Calhoun died on April 28, 1999 at St. Joseph's Medical Center in Burbank, California while being treated for diabetes and emphysema. He was honored with a Memorial Tribute during the 51st Emmy Awards.
Calhoun was mentioned numerous times as "the man who is always standing and walking" in Two Dozen and One Greyhounds, the Simpsons episode where Mr. Burns steals the puppies from Bart and Lisa.