Robert Conrad Was a Strict & Old-School Father of 8 Kids, One of Whom He ‘Raised’ on Set of ‘Wild Wild West’

One of the most recognizable actors in American productions during the 1960s and 1970s was Robert Conrad. His portrayal of James West, a frontier secret agent, in “The Wild Wild West,” will unquestionably go down in movie history.

The role he played in the “Baa Baa Black Sheep” series, Major “Pappy” Boyington, helped the musician and filmmaker achieve more recognition in the middle of the 1970s.

Robert Conrad got greater fame in his early acting career by performing the majority of the stunt work, which resulted in a few mishaps.

His lengthy career and passing

Conrad passed away at home in Malibu, California, on February 8, 2020, according to his family. He was 84. Heart failure was identified as the reason for death.

Conrad Robert Norton Falk was born on March 1, 1935, but as he grew older, he decided to go by Robert Conrad since he was sick of his mom always renaming him after her next spouse.

The actor performed in a Chicago cabaret and worked as a milkman before leaping onto the screen. He arrived in Hollywood in 1957, signed with Warner Bros. studios, and achieved popularity by making an appearance in the popular television series “Hawaii Eye” in 1959.

Before playing a part in “The Wild Wild West,” he had appearances in “77 Sunset Strip,” “Palm Springs Weekend,” and “Young Dillinger.” In addition, he appeared in a number of movies including the “Mission: Impossible” series.

Conrad had been charged with drunk driving in 2003, the year before he passed away. He was charged after seriously hurting both himself and the other driver when he collided with another car.

Conrad received a fine, six months of house imprisonment, and some paralysis in his right arm and hand. Conrad had been in accidents before, though, so this was nothing new.

He was injured and hit his head during an incident on “The Wild Wild West” set. Conrad had a concussion and a cracked skull as a result of the accident, and the doctors deemed him fortunate to be alive.

The Amazing Women In His Life

The actor, who also happens to be a lover, wed his first wife, Joan Kenlay, in secret in 1952. Sadly, their union broke down in divorce in 1977.

He met his second wife LaVelda Fann, the Miss National Teenager for 1977, the following year while serving as the M.C. for the pageant.

Fann was presenting her crown when they first met. They got married in 1983 and divorced in 2010, despite the fact that Conrad thought Fann was the most sincere, true individual he knew.

A strict and unyielding family head

With eight kids, Conrad’s mixed family was rather large. He has three kids with his second wife and five kids from his previous marriage. He and Kenlay, however, took care to raise ethical, diligent, and honest children.

Conrad thought his kids did well for themselves now that they were grownups. Kenlay continued to manage the family’s finances even after their divorce.

His kids enjoyed front-row seats while he worked since he was a celebrity. Shane and Christian, his boys, also liked acting and cherished the set experience. Christian remarked, Shane adored the ‘Black Sheep Squadron’ set. He grew up around the “Wild, Wild West” set. On the backlots of studios,he was able to act out all these dreams.

He was a tough dad who had an old-fashioned approach to parenting his kids and establishing ground rules for them to follow, even though he allowed them to accompany him on set.

He brought the females to the gym to work out while teaching them about sexual equality while teaching the lads how to iron and sew.

He ensured his daughters attended Catholic schools and prohibited them from dating until they were 16 years old. Additionally, he had required them to keep their rooms pristine and had spanked them when they had poor academic performance.


Conrad was a proud coworker with his kids in addition to being a supportive leader and a dad. Conrad was delighted when his kids from his previous marriage, as they grew older, expressed interest in his job and attempted their hand at working in front of and behind the camera.

Two of his sons worked as co-stars of the program, while his eldest daughter, Joan, joined him on the set as a show producer.

He offered a family-friendly show to CBS in the 1980s that would include mountain search and rescue personnel. He also intended his children to be a part of the family for the show. Despite the network’s reservations, Conrad proved successful.

His kids, who were engaged in various tasks, were content. Shane, his son, expressed his gratitude for the family’s support, saying, the presence of one’s brother or father makes doing talk shows much simpler than going it alone.

The production of “High Mountain Rangers” was ascribed to his daughter Joan, who was born on December 31, 1952. Her siblings and dad appeared in the drama series.

Nancy, an actress known for her work in “Black Sheep Squadron,” “Sudden Death,” and “A Man Called Sloane,” was born on March 1st, 1954. The Conrad Foundation was founded by her, and she serves as its chairman.

Christian, a performer who was born on September 17, 1964, has appeared in television movies and specials. His acting career began in 1984 and quickly gained momentum.

In 1971, on September 24, Shane was born. He gained notoriety as an actor for his roles in “The Brady Bunch Movie” (1995), “The Crazies,” and “Wanderlust” (2012).


He was recognized for his community service and got the Distinguished Service Award in broadcasting before passing away. He gave to charities by assisting individuals in need, which he did for many.

Conrad has long supported organizations that help people with multiple sclerosis, including the Jimmie Heuga Endowment, Paralyzed Veterans of America, the Wounded Warriors Project, and the United States Marine Corps.

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