Tom Straw in 2012
|Born:||March 27, 1947|
|Birthplace||Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.|
|Actor, singer, author, and entertainer|
|Spouse(s):||Patricia Steffen (17 May 1969 - present) (2 children)|
|Episodes appeared in:||"Out of Sight, Out of Mind" in Season 5|
|Character played:||Tom Straw|
Tom Sullivan (born March 27, 1947) is an entertainer, singer, actor, author, and motivational speaker. Tom made a guest appearance as Tom Straw, a wounded soldier who was blinded in the Season 5 episode "Out of Sight, Out of Mind".
Sullivan was born and raised in West Roxbury Neighborhood in Boston, MA, the son of Marie C. (née Kelly) and Thomas J. Sullivan, who owned a saloon. His premature birth caused him to need oxygen treatment while in an incubator. Though the treatment saved his life, he was given too much oxygen, which caused permanent blindness, a condition now known as retinopathy of prematurity.
He enjoys golfing, skiing, skydiving and running. Sullivan has 2 children with his wife, Patricia. Sullivan once saved his infant daughter, Blythe, from drowning in the family pool by listening for air bubbles.
Sullivan has worked as an author, composer, motivational speaker, and singer, as well as an actor, director, and producer. Sullivan also sang The Star-Spangled Banner, the national anthem of the United States, at Super Bowl X, and the 1976 Indianapolis 500. He had a recurring role on Highway to Heaven as Frank Riley, who ultimately marries Priscilla Barnes's character. Among the songs Sullivan has written and performed are "All the Colors Of the Heart," which was used as the theme for his debut episode of Highway to Heaven.
A movie based on events of his college years was produced. If You Could See What I Hear starred Marc Singer (husband of Haunani Minn) as Sullivan.
Married to Patricia Steffen on May 17, 1969, the couple has two grown children.
- If You Could See What I Hear (1972, Perception Records)
Selected television and movie creditsEdit
- Touched by an Angel (in episode "Then Sings my Soul" as Clarence), 1999
- Renegade (in episode "Love Hurts" as Denny Martin), 1996
- Designing Women (in episode "One Sees, the Other Doesn't" as Danny), 1989
- Highway to Heaven (two episodes, as Frank Riley)
- Knight Rider (in episode "Knight Song" as Charley Connors), 1985
- Search for Tomorrow (as Michael Kendall), 1983
- Mork & Mindy (in episode "Mork Learns to See" as Tom Bickley), 1980
- Airport '77 (as Steve), 1977
- M*A*S*H (in episode "Out of Sight, Out of Mind" as Tom Straw), 1976
- WKRP in Cincinnati (in episode "To Err is Human" as Hester Sherman), 1982
- Fame (in episode "Solo Song" as blind vocal coach), 1982
- Moving Through Space: A Day with Tom Sullivan (composer of song "Idle Hands"), 2003
- Good Morning America (as himself - feature correspondent), 1978–1983
- Super Bowl X (sang "The Star-Spangled Banner" with the cast of Up with People), Jan. 18, 1976
- Black Sunday (sang "The Star-Spangled Banner" with the cast of Up with People), 1977
- If You Could See What I Hear (1975) ISBN 978-0-06-014167-7
- Tom Sullivan's Adventures In Darkness (1976) ISBN 978-0-7852-2081-7
- The Leading Lady. Dinah's Story (1991, with Betty White) ISBN 978-0-553-07395-9
- Seeing Lessons: 14 Life Secrets I've Learned Along the Way (2003) ISBN 978-0-471-26356-2
- Together: A novel of shared vision (2008, with Betty White) ISBN 978-1-59554-456-8
- Alive Day: A Story of Love and Loyalty (2009), with Betty White ISBN 978-1-59554-457-5