Known for movies

Short Info

Date Of BirthSeptember 1, 1922
DiedNovember 16, 2016, Fort Myers, Florida, United States
SpouseCarole Fleishman, Barbara Masters
FactU.S. congressional representative from Wisconsin (1953-1969).

Melvin Laird was born in Marshfield, Wisconsin, on September 1, 1922. Laird’s father, Melvin E. Laird Sr., was a lawyer and his mother, Pauline (Dwyer) Laird, was a homemaker. Laird had three brothers: Robert, Kenneth, and John. Laird’s father died when he was eleven years old and his mother died when he was sixteen.

Laird graduated from high school in 1940 and then attended Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. He interrupted his studies to serve in the United States Navy during World War II. He served as an intelligence officer in the Pacific Theater. After the war, Laird returned to Carleton and graduated in 1947 with a bachelor’s degree in political science.

Laird then attended the University of Minnesota Law School, graduating in 1950. He married Carol B. Giesen in 1951 and they had four children: Stephen, David, John, and Susan.

Laird began his political career as a legislative assistant to Wisconsin Congressman Alexander Wiley. He then worked as a staff member for the Republican National Committee. In 1956, Laird was elected to the United States House of Representatives from Wisconsin’s 7th congressional district. He served in the House for twelve years.

In 1969, Laird was appointed Secretary of Defense by President Richard Nixon. He served in that position for four years. After leaving the Nixon administration, Laird founded The Melvin Laird Company, a Washington, D.C.-based consulting firm.

Laird has been awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor. He has also received the Distinguished Service Medal, the Navy’s highest honor.

Laird is currently ninety-seven years old and resides in Florida. His net worth is estimated to be $5 million.

General Info

Full NameMelvin Laird
Date Of BirthSeptember 1, 1922
DiedNovember 16, 2016, Fort Myers, Florida, United States
Place Of BirthOmaha, Nebraska, United States
EducationCarleton College


SpouseCarole Fleishman, Barbara Masters
ChildrenAlison Laird-Large, John Laird, David Laird


AwardsLasker-Bloomberg Public Service Award

Social profile links


1U.S. secretary of defense (1969-1973).
2U.S. congressional representative from Wisconsin (1953-1969).



Cold War1998TV Mini-Series documentaryHimself
Vietnam: A Television History1983TV Series documentaryHimself
The Ten Thousand Day War1980TV Mini-Series documentaryHimself (Nixon's Secretary of Defense)
The Jimmy Dean Show1966TV SeriesHimself

Archive Footage

Vietnam: A Television History1983TV Series documentaryHimself
The War at Home1979DocumentaryHimself - Secretary of Defense (uncredited)
Men of Crisis: The Harvey Wallinger Story1971TV ShortHimself (uncredited)

Source: IMDb, Wikipedia

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