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Thomas "Tom" Byrd (born May 18, 1960 in the Philippine Islands) is an American actor.

Tom Byrd
Born Thomas Byrd
(1960-05-18) May 18, 1960 (age 57)
Philippine Islands
Reared in Florida, USA


(1) Boone Sawyer on NBC's Boone (1983-1984)
(2) Lou Waller on UPN's Live Shot (1995)
Byrd was cast as young musician Boone Sawyer in NBC's Boone in 1983, but the series, created by sentimental author Earl Hamner, Jr., never garnered the needed ratings, as had Hamner's successful series, The Waltons and Falcon Crest.


Byrd, who was reared in Florida, has primarily appeared on network television between 1981 and 2000. During the 1983-1984 season, at the age of twenty-three, he was cast as a teenager, Boone Sawyer, an aspiring Elvis Presley-style singer living in Tennessee during the 1950s, in the short-lived NBC series Boone.[1]

Boone was the replacement program (Mondays at 8 p.m. Eastern) for Michael Landon's Little House on the Prairie, which concluded a nine-year run in the same time slot in the spring of 1983. The program was created by the author Earl Hamner, Jr., who had been far more successful with his CBS series The Waltons. A critic described Boone as "an excellent show that didn't get a chance" in the fierce competition of network television: That's Incredible! on ABC and Scarecrow and Mrs. King on CBS.[2]

Barry Corbin, a native Texan, played Byrd's father, Merit Sawyer, who considered the pursuit of a musical career to have been unlikely to succeed. Corbin later had a leading role on the CBS series Northern Exposure.[3] Ronnie Claire Edwards, the Oklahoma City native who starred as Corabeth Godsey, the wife of storekeeper Ike Godsey (Joe Conley) in Hamner's The Waltons, played Boone's "Aunt Dolly".[4]

Other stars on Boone included Elizabeth Huddle, as Boone's mother, William Edward Phipps as Uncle Link Sawyer, the husband of Aunt Dolly, Faye Sawyer, Andrew Prine as A.W. Holly, Julie Anne Haddock as Amanda, Robyn Lively as Banjo, and Amanda Peterson as Squirt Sawyer. Ten episodes aired in the fall of 1983, and three remaining segments were broadcast in late July and early August 1984.[2]

Byrd's first television appearance was in 1981 on ABC's situation comedy Laverne & Shirley in the episode entitled "Teenage Lust". His most recent role was in 2000 as Tim Walsh in two episodes of NBC's Frasier starring Kelsey Grammer. In the interval, he appeared in such series as NBC's Family Ties, The Facts of Life, and Remington Steele and CBS's Newhart and Murder, She Wrote starring Angela Lansbury. Byrd has also done stunts in several films, including Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983), in which he had a small part as a soldier.[1]

In 1985, he played Sam Neill's son in the miniseries Kane & Abel, and later played an inmate in Young Guns II (1990). The film, principally starring Emilio Estevez and Kiefer Sutherland, still occasionally airs on the American Movie Classic network.[5]

In 1995, Byrd was cast as Lou Waller, the ex-jock sportscaster with a secret that he fears could ruin his career, in Live Shot, a short-lived drama series from Rysher Entertainment broadcast on the UPN network during its initial season on the air. All UPN programs at the time were soon cancelled except for Star Trek: Voyager.[6]


Film and television
Year Title Role Notes
1981 Laverne & Shirley Mike Episode: "Young at Heart"
1982 Quincy, M.E. Perry Jordan Episode: "Bitter Pill"
1982 Young Doctors in Love New Intern Feature film
1982 The Powers of Matthew Star Tom Episode: "The Accused"
1982 Gimme a Break! Dave Episode: "Sam's Imaginary Friend"
1982 The Facts of Life Leo Episode: "Different Drummer"
1983 Fantasy Island Ethan Episode: "The Devil Stick/Touch and Go"
1983 Alice Rudy Episode: "Tommy, the Jailbird"
1983 Twilight Zone: The Movie G.I. Feature film (Segment #1: "Time Out")
1983–84 Boone Boone Sawyer Main cast (13 episodes)
1983 Death Ride to Osaka Don Potter Television film (aka Girls of the White Orchid)
1984 Family Ties Rick Harmon Episode: "Ready or Not"
1984 St. Elsewhere Kevin Hooper Episode: "Equinox"
1984 Love Thy Neighbor Wayne Nelson Television film
1984 All Together Now Kip Parker Television sitcom pilot
1984 Wet Gold Chris Barnes Television film
1984 Remington Steele Chip Flowers Episode: "Breath of Steele"
1985 The Facts of Life Nick Episode: "With a Little Help from My Friends"
1985 Malice in Wonderland William Hopper Television film
1985 Kane & Abel Richard Kane Television miniseries
1986 Newhart Robert Cameron Episode: "Desperately Desiring Susan: Part 2"
1987 Ohara Danny Johnson Episode: "The Sparrow"
1988 Murder, She Wrote Paul Gambini Episode: "A Very Good Year for Murder"
1989 Out Cold Mr. Holstrom Feature film
1989 Nightingales Dr. Thomas Price Episodes: #1.4 / #1.9
1989 Guts and Glory: The Rise and Fall of Oliver North Robert Owen Television film
1990 Alien Nation Bud Anderson Episode: "Partners"
1990 Sydney Rick Episode: "You? You're a Private Eye?"
1990 Young Guns II: Blaze of Glory Pit Inmate Feature film
1991 True Colors Donald Jenkins Episode: "A Real Pain"
1994 One West Waikiki Frank Walker Episode: "Terminal Island"
1995 Live Shot Lou Waller Main cast (14 episodes)
1997 Unhappily Ever After Professor Alfred Episode: "College!"
2000 Frasier Tim Walsh "Something Borrowed, Someone Blue" (Parts 1 & 2)