Actor Tommy Ford From “Martin” Has Passed Away

Update: After a days long fight, actor Tommy Ford’s family has confirmed his death. Carl Payne, who co-starred with Ford on Martin, told TMZ “On behalf of the family, we would like to thank everyone for their love, support and prayers.”

Actor Tommy Ford (a/k/a Thomas Mikal Ford) has built a 20-plus-year career on television through his main roles on Martin and The Parkers. The 54 year-old Yonkers, New York native is currently on life support following a ruptured aneurysm in his abdomen. The medical emergency took place Sunday (October 9). Shortly after, Ford was rushed to a hospital in Atlanta, Georgia. Since then, his health has reportedly declined.


Gina Ford, Tommy’s wife spoke with TMZ. According to the publication, the actor is “not expected to make it through the day.”

Ford’s character of “Tommy Strawn” was integral to the series Martin. Playing one of the leading character’s best friends, “Tommy” was the comedic “straight-man” to the antics of “Martin Payne.” In early seasons, he also was the subject of a romance with fellow cast mainstay “Pam James.”

In August of this year, Tommy Ford participated in a partial reunion with the Martin castHe told the Tom Joyner Show, “I’m so exited to see my old pals again. Not only did we work together but we were friends so I can’t wait to see all of them again. We still see and support each other so it’ll be fun.” He expressed the bond the cast felt, “We still stay in touch, and hug on each others’ neck and love and support each other.” Ford also spoke of the disappointment following the series ’97 cancellation. He discussed his openness to a Martin reunion show.

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Debuting on A Different World in 1989, Ford was also part of the cast of FOX’s New York Undercover. He was involved with Martin (also on FOX) throughout the series (appearing in every single episode, in fact) from mid-1992 to early 1997. He has appeared in films such as Kid n’ Play’s Class Act, and starring alongside Eddie Murphy and Richard Pryor in Harlem Nights.

Outside of acting, TMZ reports that Ford is a Children’s author, and a promoter of an alcohol-and-drug-free lifestyle. He also had a line of neckties, designed to prepare young men for the professional world. In his interview with Joyner, Ford joked at the line, given his Martin character never having a specified job.

Ambrosia For Heads extends concerns and recovery wishes for Tommy Ford and his family at this time.