Efrem Zimbalist Jr. was a real legend in his own time. His distinctive voice and handsome leading man looks made him seem a natural for both TV and movies. After serving for five years in the U.S. Army and recovering from a leg wound in the battle over the Hurtgen Forest, he started his acting career in stage, TV and movies in 1946 which continued with voiceovers in cartoons and final acting appearances as late as 2008. Although born into nonpracticing Jewish home, with parents who both famous in their right, Zimbalist Jr. was drawn towards a spiritual journey which had him joining and attending several Christian churches in his lifetime, and even doing inspirational and Bible readings for TBN, the fundamentalist Christian TV network. Politically, he was a very conservative Republican who was one of few well known actors to voice public support for failed 1964 presidential candidate, Barry Goldwater. He joined other very conservative actors Chill Wills and John Birch Society member, Walter Brennan, in his support for Goldwater that year.
Zimbalist had the looks that made him a natural for war movies, police and FBI roles. He looked the role of a policeman or law enforcement type. Always known as being a perfect gentleman, Zimbalist was greatly admired for his calm demeanor and overall likability by all that worked with him, although a few critics sometimes were critical that his performances were sometimes bland and less than overwhelming, but fully suitable for any role he took on.
In his later years, his inspirational Bible readings on TBN seemed like a very kind donation of his time to the Christian network and very nice filler moments in between regular programming. In his later years, Efrem Zimbalist Jr. veered away from his flirtations with fundamentalist Christianity, and even had some regrets about it, as he rejoined more mainstream Christian churches and remained a very faithful Christian follower until his life peacefully ended at home at the age of 95.