His mother died when he was five years old and he and his brothers were sent to live with relatives in about 1933. He returned to his father in about a year after he remarried. His step-mother was brutal and James joined the US Merchant Marines when he was 16.
At 17 James joined his father in Los Angeles and enrolled at Hollywood High School, where he was voted the most popular student. While at Hollywood High School he was a model for Jantzen swim suits. He returned to Norman and attended high school, but did not graduate. He received his diploma later in the Army.
James joined the Oklahoma National Guard and served in World War II from 1944 to 1945 and in Korea as a Rifleman in the 5th Regimantal Combat team from 1949 to 1952. He received 2 Purple Hearts.
James married Lois Josephine Fleischman Clarke,on August 17, 1956 in Los Angeles, California.They met at an "Adlai Stevenson for President" rally. When Garner and Clarke married, her daughter Kim from a previous marriage was seven years old and recovering from polio. Garner had one daughter with Lois: Greta "Gigi" Garner. They were married for 58 years.
James died on July 19, 2014 in Los Angeles of a Heart Attack. His body was cremated.
James Garner starred in more than 50 films, including The Great Escape (1963), The Americanization of Emily (1964), Grand Prix (1966), Blake Edwards' Victor Victoria (1982), Murphy's Romance (1985), for which he received an Academy Award nomination, Space Cowboys (2000), and The Notebook (2004).
He starred in several television series spanning more than five decades, including such popular roles as Bret Maverick in the 1950s western comedy series Maverick and Jim Rockford in the 1970s detective drama series The Rockford Files.
|James Garner's Star|
He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6809 Hollywood Boulevard.
|James Garner as Bret Maverick in 1959|
Prime Time Emmy
Screen Actors Guild
|James Garner as Jim Rockford|
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Categories: Norman, Oklahoma | Los Angeles County, California | United States Merchant Marine | Purple Heart | United States Army, World War II | United States Army, Korean War | Famous Actors of the 20th Century | Hollywood Walk of Fame | Emmy Award Winners of the 20th Century | Academy Award Nominees of the 20th Century | Bumgardner Name Study | Oklahoma, Notables | Notables | Wounded in Action, United States of America, World War II | Oklahoma Project-Managed